I’m finally doing it!

In my recent post about Squirrel Appreciation Day, I confessed that one of the day’s celebration ideas was something I intended to act on…the idea to submit an application for my yard to be a Certified Wildlife Habitat. Today I’m finally doing it.  I did my research and found out what steps to take. Would you like to come along with me through my application process? Great! Let’s go…

I’m going to break this up into three steps. So, this is the first of three posts about my application.

First things first. I had to find out where to go to get an application. I found the organization offering the certification. It’s the National Wildlife Federation. Once at their site, I found information to, “Help Wildlife by Turning Your Garden into a Certified Wildlife Habitat®.” I clicked the “certify now” button and was able to start the process by detailing the type of habitat and the basic elements that are required.

I began by selecting “Home” from the list of seven types of habitats that included Home, School, Business, Gift, Nature Center, Place of Worship, Community Garden. Entering my email address took me to a page where I answered additional questions (by placing a check next to the answer options) about my habitat elements and wildlife friendly elements of my habitat.

Habitat elements included the size of the habitat (6 choices from less than 1/8 acre to 10+ acres) and description (choices were rural, suburban or urban).

Wildlife friendly elements included Food Sources, Water Sources, Cover, and Places to Raise Young.

A sliver moon is faintly visible with crab apples the birds feast upon in my winter garden.

And so, I checked off the types of plants (like my crab apple tree) on which the birds feed and the feeder and feed types I offer (such as suet, seed, and hummingbird).  My water sources include two bird baths, one of which is heated in winter. Cover includes evergreens, thick shrubs, ground cover and a roosting box. Places to raise young in my habitat are mature trees, dense shrubs and a nesting box.

Alright. I think I made it through the check lists okay. I clicked on “Save and Continue” which took me to the next section. I’ll tell you about that in the second post about my certification. Will you come along with me through the next part? Good! I’ll see you next time!

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