Every year on September 7 we commemorate National Threatened Species Day to raise awareness of plants and animals at risk of extinction. Threatened Species Day acknowledges the death of the last remaining Thylacine, Tasmanian tiger at Hobart Zoo in 1936. It is a day to reflect on what you can do to make a difference.
Australia is home to more than 500,000 animal and plant species, many of which are found nowhere else in the world. Over the last 200 years, more than 100 animal and plant species have become extinct. In NSW there are almost 1000 animal and plant species at risk of extinction.
Threatened Species Day is a time to focus on or native plants, animals, and ecosystems and look at how we can protect them into the future.
What can you do to help?
You can create a native haven in your garden that will encourage wildlife to come and share your backyard.
Attract birds to your garden: use plants that will provide food, shelter and nesting sites. Local flowering plants and fruit trees provide birds with nectar and seeds. Use mulch to encourage worms, insects and grubs to thrive. Plant dense prickly native shrubs create shelter, hang up nesting boxes and install a bird bath.
Encourage frogs to your backyard: create a small shallow pond in an area that is partly shaded. Include thick ground hugging plants around part of the pond to provide areas of warmer and cooler water. Your pond will need some sunlight to encourage algae and other plants that provide food for tadpoles. Make sure the banks slope gently so that the frogs can get out. Add some rocks and logs to provide shelter for adult frogs. Put up some Frog Tubes to provide shelter for tree frogs
Make a home for invertebrates too: remember not are insects are pests. Good insects pollinate plants, break down dead flora and fauna, aerate the soil and are a food source for other wildlife. They can even help keep harmful pests away. Create an inviting environment for insects and spiders by planting plenty of native plants.
Make sure you use chemical-free pest control to maintain your animal friendly backyard.