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Old 01-04-2012, 12:58 PM   #1
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Default More on biodiversity and migration habitat.

In the archives of Audubon Magazine is an article from the Backyard series brought to my attention by

Using Georgia Native Plants: Birds Love a Thicket
and
Restoring The Landscape With Native Plants

The article is written by Janet Marinelli.

Read here...
Audubon: Backyard

Quote:
Evidence suggests that migrant songbirds aren't fussy about vegetation type, the particular species that make up a plant community--an oak and hickory forest, say, or a boreal forest of spruces and firs. Blackburnian warblers, for example, breed in the coniferous forests of Canada but feed in deciduous forests while migrating through most of the United States
However, migrant songbirds are more particular about vegetation structure and vertical layers: The mourning warbler has a definite affinity for shrubby thickets, whereas the magnolia warbler favors both tall and understory trees. Two-thirds of all the migrants observed in one study were found in shrubs and understory trees--the layers most often missing in the typical suburban landscape.
Quote:
In the western states, streamsides and washes are by far the most important habitats for migrating and breeding birds alike. Yet these are among the most threatened habitats in North America--more than 95 percent of the riparian habitat in the western United States has been destroyed or degraded, according to Askins. Gardeners and landowners have a major role to play in the restoration of critical floodplain habitats.
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Old 01-04-2012, 10:11 PM   #2
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Nice article by Ms. Marinelli.
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Old 01-05-2012, 12:20 PM   #3
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Hey benj1, glad you read and enjoyed the piece. I have been looking for more information on migration habitat and how it may differ in requirements from winter and breeding grounds for migrating species.
It is good to see some confirmation that even isolated habitat islands within urban and agricultural settings can be of use along with the roadside and streamside vegetation corridors.
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Old 01-09-2012, 01:23 AM   #4
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It seems the great plains where water is scarce isn't the best place to graze cattle [Where is?] When the Bison are re-introduced they not only don't over-graze but don't destroy the Riparian habitat the way cattle do. Cattle grazing introduces and promotes shrubs which then the ranchers spray with herbicide. While the Bison do roam they will stay in areas where they paw away at the turf until they create depressions, These fill with water providing more diversity. Rancher's don't care for prairie dogs much but their tunnels help aerate the soil and are a prime meal for black-footed ferret and golden eagles.
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Old 01-09-2012, 01:37 AM   #5
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Janet Marinelli does a good job on writing articles about attracting wild life in Urban and Suburban plots, The idea of using living hedges over cedar privacy fences and chain link makes so much sense. Sure you may need to have a pool fenced or an area for the dog but a berry producing hedge has many benefits for Neo-Tropical Birds.
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Old 01-09-2012, 11:15 AM   #6
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You are preaching to the choir, sprucetree. Hopefully with more and more information getting out there about the benefits, the "choir" will get bigger.
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Old 01-09-2012, 04:40 PM   #7
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Thanks Dap and I appreciated your photos. I just heard that Martha Stewart's show might be canceled, Even with all the Media and Web-Sites Native Wildlife Gardening is still going to have failures. We've all tried to attract wildlife but the plants with red flowers don't always attract the hummers. Sometimes Storms or Drought are the downfall. It's kind of like football, Two teams plan and play to the best of their ability but only one wins. I remember your last signature "If the only thing moving in your yard is a lawn mower your doing something wrong" and even if parts of your garden fail anyone can still see the blue birds of success. I think that people do notice if your yard is alive, Their brain may say "Oh I could never pull that off" but summer after summer they notice the succession [core word success] and even on a dreary March day they'll gravitate to the pussy willows. Of course the Media would have us believe we can all have a baseball diamond or golf course lawn and some will always believe that. We may never change their minds but their outdoor time isn't quality time sitting on a tractor, Not only can Wildlife Gardeners get plenty of exercise outdoors but having some home-grown vegetables and a chicken coop will be the best diet anyone could wish for. When I first moved into my Urban landscape I did lots of work near a busy roadway, Lots of cars would honk their horn or yell something out the window [I never could understand what was yelled because your words aren't clear in a car traveling 40mph] sometimes I'd wave... But I noticed last year while expanding that bed that no-one honked or yelled. The trees are semi- mature and the maybe their eyes said to their brain that property is unique/lush and they resisted the first impulse.
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Old 01-09-2012, 06:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sprucetree View Post
Thanks Dap and I appreciated your photos.
Thank you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sprucetree View Post
I just heard that Martha Stewart's show might be canceled, Even with all the Media and Web-Sites Native Wildlife Gardening is still going to have failures.
I have only seen, perhaps, three or so episodes of Martha Stewart in several years...does she promote the use of natives?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sprucetree View Post
We've all tried to attract wildlife but the plants with red flowers don't always attract the hummers. Sometimes Storms or Drought are the downfall. It's kind of like football, Two teams plan and play to the best of their ability but only one wins. I remember your last signature "If the only thing moving in your yard is a lawn mower your doing something wrong" and even if parts of your garden fail anyone can still see the blue birds of success. I think that people do notice if your yard is alive, Their brain may say "Oh I could never pull that off" but summer after summer they notice the succession [core word success] and even on a dreary March day they'll gravitate to the pussy willows. Of course the Media would have us believe we can all have a baseball diamond or golf course lawn and some will always believe that. We may never change their minds but their outdoor time isn't quality time sitting on a tractor, Not only can Wildlife Gardeners get plenty of exercise outdoors but having some home-grown vegetables and a chicken coop will be the best diet anyone could wish for. When I first moved into my Urban landscape I did lots of work near a busy roadway, Lots of cars would honk their horn or yell something out the window [I never could understand what was yelled because your words aren't clear in a car traveling 40mph] sometimes I'd wave... But I noticed last year while expanding that bed that no-one honked or yelled. The trees are semi- mature and the maybe their eyes said to their brain that property is unique/lush and they resisted the first impulse.
I love what you wrote here.

...and I have to admit that it seems likely that the yelled comments were negative...and if they stopped, as you say, passers-by must now like what they see. Hopefully someone (or several someones) will stop and say something complimentary one of these days. Maybe the same will happen for me!

I have to believe that most people enjoy natural areas and the beauty they provide in each season...as well as the activity as you mentioned. Perhaps that alone will be enough to inspire others to follow suit.

Your comments regarding my bluebirds made me smile--I guess they really are "bluebirds of happiness"...now I'll start viewing them as "bluebirds of success" as well. Thanks.
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Old 01-10-2012, 04:40 AM   #9
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Yeah Dap just remember the "Bluebirds of Success" and that you put the Success in Succession and failures will happen and things go alot better. There are quite a few Martha Stewart shows that deal with bat and owl houses and attracting bees, They shouldn't be hard to find.
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Old 01-11-2012, 12:49 AM   #10
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sprucetree> It’s really a crying shame but…. any show on natives probably will be canceled. Maybe they ran into conflicts of interest with existing advertisers? Martha Stewart isn’t a media company anymore….it’s a merchandising company. The way I understand it is they make their money these days by creating shows around products they’re paid to demo to potential consumers then they’re paid to support those products with articles that offer convenient supply lists that just happen to include those companies “paying to play”. I caught 1 from this past December on buying seed and she was promoting J L Hudson and Park Seeds. I guess a bird in the hand is worth 2 in the bush…. how do they keep the likes of those 2 companies happy while running a program on native plants? Stewart was probably trying to tap into a new market that could yield new followers and advertisers and coulda run up against a no compete clause or something…. who knows. They lost K-Mart…. why… I don’t know but I’m sure that hurt because it woulda forced them to seek out new sources of revenue. They could be between a rock and a hard place considering they still haven’t rebounded from that insider trading public relations fiasco of ImClone Systems biotech stock.…. run a show on natives to try tapping into the growing number of consumers interested in incorporating them into their landscapes OR don’t run it which would appease existing advertisers that don’t want competition from that small but growing segment of the market. Just do a search of martha + stewart + advertiser + conflict and you’ll get a boatload of hits that spell out why a show on natives might never see the light of day. Too bad…. natives could really use a helping hand from someone like her or Oprah.
--
dappy> This is a really good resource for info on bats, What We Do | Bat Conservation.
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