Winter has taken over as days and nights are beginning to become colder and colder. We all hold on to the warmth in these times, wrapping up in our winter coats and scarfs, but do we think about how animals cope at this time of year? How do they survive and how can we help?
Winter is officially here, and it’s time to think about how we can start helping the wildlife to hibernate this winter. They’re all kinds of wildlife out there that need to seek out the warmth, food, and shelter during winter.
Gardening experts Oeco Garden Rooms have brought forward easy to follow tips you can implement into your garden this winter. Also, to accompany there’s a handy infographic that shows you clear directions you can take with your garden and highlights what exactly wildlife can eat and can’t.
These tips can easily be achieved, maintained and carried forward throughout the upcoming months. These animals are a vital part of our environment, so we need to give them a helping hand when the cold weather comes through.
There are various approaches when providing a hibernating setup in your garden, but one of the easiest ways to follow is allowing an area in your garden to overgrow. Letting the grass overgrow provides a natural shelter and warmth for all kinds of wildlife to gain what they need.
Another method is placing a few logs in a corner stockpiled up, this will provide plenty of shelters too. If you have space in your garden, plant a tree. This will attract birds and insects over to nest, becoming a hive of activity over the cold winter months. Planting in wildflowers is a great idea as butterflies and bees are drawn towards them.
Hedges offers a safe area for birds to nest into and also for other small animals to gather in for comfort. They provide a big enough area, enclosed off from the rain, and ideal for hibernating purposes. Include in a birdhouse as birds rely on finding these in the colder months, as shelter and warmth can be tricky to attain in trees.
Food & water
Providing food and water to wildlife is a huge helping hand and support during these difficult times. Hedgehogs require fat in order to survive the hibernation period. They hibernate in November through to March and can be fed almost anything except milk and bread. Preferably they desire cat food with chopped peanuts or peanut butter. Make sure to avoid fly eggs being laid onto the food, put the food out at sunset times.
If you can spare the space in your garden to have a pond, then you’ll be helping out the wildlife in all sorts of ways. This will allow hedgehogs to regularly drink and stay hydrated, however, make sure they can leave the pond easily, ensuring a side of the pond has a shallow edge. If you do not have a pond or simply can’t implement one in your garden, you can put out a bowl of water that wildlife can drink from, making sure that it is replenished regularly.
Same goes for a bowl of food, left out for the wildlife. Birds can quickly get around from one garden to the next. Supply food on a table and water to help out on the invitation. You’ll be helping them by contributing to their everyday go-to necessities which are harder to find during the winter months.
Double check any drains, holes, and pits to make sure they’re covered securely, as this can be unsafe for wildlife if they stagger across it.
By following these simple to do tips in your garden, you will be helping out the wildlife and contribute to their hibernation period.