McFadden Ranch supports the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) and we encourage the creation and preservation of wildlife habitats. These habitats can be established in your own back yard, at your place of business, in your community, or at your school. To assist those who are interested in providing the essentials for wildlife, the NWF has created a list of guidelines which are below. Next to the NWF guidelines are the steps that McFadden Ranch has taken to maintain its certification as a NWF Certified Wildlife Habitat participant.
NWF Guidelines for Creating a Certified Wildlife Habitat.
Whether you have an apartment balcony or a 20-acre farm, you can create a garden that attracts beautiful wildlife and helps restore habitat in commercial and residential areas. By providing food, water, cover and a place for wildlife to raise their young--and by incorporating sustainable gardening practices--you not only help wildlife, but you also qualify to become an official Certified Wildlife Habitat™.
1. Provide Food for Wildlife Everyone needs to eat! Planting native forbs, shrubs and trees is the easiest way to provide the foliage, nectar, pollen, berries, seeds and nuts that many species of wildlife require to survive and thrive. You can also incorporate supplemental feeders and food sources.
2. Supply Water for Wildlife Wildlife need sources of clean water for many purposes, including drinking, bathing and reproduction. Water sources may include natural features such as ponds, lakes, rivers, springs, oceans and wetlands; or human-made features such as bird baths, puddling areas for butterflies, installed ponds or rain gardens.
3. Create Cover for Wildlife Wildlife require places to hide in order to feel safe from people, predators and inclement weather. Use things like native vegetation, shrubs, thickets and brush piles or even dead trees.
4. Give Wildlife a Place to Raise Their Young Wildlife need a sheltered place to raise their offspring. Many places for cover can double as locations where wildlife can raise young, from wildflower meadows and bushes where many butterflies and moths lay their eggs, or caves where bats roost and form colonies.
5. Let Your Garden Go Green How you maintain your garden or landscape can have an important effect on the health of the soil, air, water and habitat for native wildlife--as well as the human community nearby. Reducing chemical use, composting, mulching and reducing turf grass in your yard are important steps to gardening greener.
6. Ready...Set...Certify! Once you have provided these essential elements to make a healthy and sustainable wildlife habitat, join the thousands of wildlife enthusiasts across the country who have earned the distinction of being part of NWF's Certified Wildlife Habitat™ program.
What does McFadden Ranch do to maintain its certification as a NWF Wildlife Habitat?
1. Provide Food for Wildlife. a. Hanging bird feeders 1) Nyjer seed (thistle) feeders 2) Wild finch delight feeders (mixture of seeds best for regional and migrating birds in our area) 4) Oriole feeder (filled with our own Western Boysenberry Jelly) 5) Suet feeder 6) Hummingbird feeders b. Ground feeding: Cleared areas for food for doves, quail, etc. c. Planting of nectar- and fruit-bearing plants. In addition to our orchard and garden areas, we have planteds specific plants for the wildlife which include seasonal flowering plants, Cape Honeysuckle hedge, Fruiting Mulberries, Sapote and Loquat trees.
2. Supply Water for Wildlife a. Bird baths (recycled) b. Installed pond with aerator/sprinkler c. Fountain (recycled) d. Natural rock formations that gather water from sprinklers e. Natural puddling areas under orchard trees for rain and sprinkler water and placement of recycled animal crocks
4. Give Wildlife a Place to Raise Their Young a. Organically grown and hand crafted gourd houses b. Hand crafted wood bird houses made from recycled wood c. Hand made owl boxes placed high on recycled pipe d. Mulch embankments e. Stick piles d. Orchard and Garden Areas
5. Let Your Garden Go Green a. Pesticide free garden and orchard b. Use of neem oil and iron phosphate for control of pests and fungus c. We feed our livestock our organic greens. We fertilize our orchard and garden areas with mulch made from our livestock droppings. d. We maintain only one small area of grass yard reducing the need for turf maintenance.
6. Ready...Set...Certify! a. McFadden Ranch makes an ongoing effort to continue to attract and support wildlife through proper land stewardship. We are proud to be certified as a NWF Wildlife Habitat.