Housebuilder partners with RSPB to release guide on creating ‘wildlife havens’

BARRATT Homes Scotland and the RSPB have launched a new project aimed at inspiring and advising people on how to turn their outdoor spaces into havens for wildlife.

The nature on your doorstep initiative comes following an influx in those seeking advice from the RSPB website on how to make their garden more wildlife-friendly amidst lockdown. Further to this, over half (51%) of those surveyed in a recent YouGov poll said that the pandemic has made them more aware of nature.

The joint initiative will allow people to access how-to gardening guides; easy step-by-step videos; seasonal gardening advice; and an online community dedicated to bringing people together to ask questions, seek advice and share successes.

Already available are four of the ten ‘wildlife action’ articles and how-to videos from Adrian Thomas, the RSPB’s wildlife gardening expert. The first two articles guide people through how to find their green fingers and the importance of water for wildlife. Visitors to the page will also be able to sign up to receive a monthly newsletter full of useful tips and tricks.

The two organisations said that the project will continue to grow over the next three years into a ‘go-to’ place for gardening for wildlife advice. The project will host everything from customisable content to seasonal advice across the four nations, as well as researching what drives or prevents people from welcoming wildlife to their outside spaces and investigating how to empower local communities to make shared spaces home for wildlife.

Adrian Thomas, the RSPB’s wildlife gardening expert, said, “Our local wildlife has been an incredible source of comfort over the past year of isolation and uncertainty, and we’re so thrilled to see people wanting to help nature in return.  With Nature on Your Doorstep, we want to provide a place for everyone to learn from each other, ask questions, and be inspired to do more.

“Gardens can provide a crucial lifeline for struggling species – familiar birds such as the house sparrow have seen their numbers halve in the last 40 years, while 28 species of urban butterflies are down 69% in three decades. But seven out of eight households in Britain have a garden, and that is a huge patchwork of potential homes for nature. To that hungry butterfly, or that weather-beaten bird looking for a place to roost, just one garden can make all the difference. If we all work together to transform our gardens, we can truly revive our world.”

Douglas McLeod, managing director at Barratt Homes Scotland, added, “We want to empower people to give nature a home, by creating an online community for them to learn and to share their experiences, giving them digital tools which they can then take into the garden to get their hands dirty. This is all about helping homeowners to turn their garden into havens for wildlife.”