Bringing Nature Home – At home with nature

21 Jun 2021

Bringing Nature Home - At home with nature

We put a lot of effort into making our gardens wilder, and rightly so. But what about our houses and flats themselves? In a world where the wild places are shrinking, every inch of space we can make for nature is vital.

Whether it’s the joyful song of a robin drifting through an open window, or the colourful flash of a peacock butterfly just beyond the glass, it’s always a delight to glimpse the wild world just beyond our walls.

But our wildlife is in trouble. Natural habitats are shrinking, becoming fragmented and isolated by roads and other developments. With every tree that is lost, there are fewer natural cavities in which bats and birds can roost and nest. Nature no longer has the space it needs to thrive.

Nature reserves are invaluable, but to keep these protected areas from becoming wild oases in an impoverished landscape, we need to use every single space to help wildlife. Our gardens, streets, road verges and even houses can become part of a wild network, creating vital green corridors and stepping stones that connect larger wild spaces.

Every home, new or old, can play a part. The Wildlife Trusts have a vision for future housing and work with some developers to make new builds as green as possible, with built-in features that complement the habitats around them. But existing homes can do their bit, too. With just a few mostly inexpensive adjustments, we can make our roofs, walls and even windows a little more wildlife-friendly.

From bee bricks and bat and bird boxes that provide safe roosting and nesting spots, to walls blooming with climbing plants, there are lots of great ways to turn the outside of your house into a wildlife sanctuary. The best results will come when they complement the surrounding landscape, so take a look at the habitats around your house and choose the best features for your location – bats are more likely to use a roost close to a hedgerow or line of trees, and birds need to be able to find enough food to feed their hungry chicks.

Together, our homes and gardens take up more space than all of the UK’s nature reserves put together. So let’s make every inch count!

Visit our website for handy guides to helping wildlife, from building bat boxes to attracting bees

by the London Wildlife Trust