I read the coolest post over at one of my favorite garden blogs, Laguna Dirt.

According to information from the the National Wildlife Federation you can certify your property as a National Wildlife Habitat by doing the following:

“All you need to do is provide elements from each of the following areas:

I am pretty sure that my yard would qualify!  We have bird feeders, bird baths, and bird houses as well as plenty of trees and shrubs.  Our yard is popular with a lot of birds (and several cats, and the occasional squirrel or raccoon).

Laguna Dirt got certified and they sent her this nifty sign to post:

You can check out her great photos and read about the  kinds of things she has going on in her yard that qualified it as an official wildlife habitat here.

I think the sign is a great way to raise a little neighborhood awareness…maybe invite some questions or get other people interested.  I think this would be a really great project for a school, or for elementary school kids to work on doing at home for part of a science class…extra credit…something.  What a great way for city kids to become more aware of our natural surroundings and perhaps develop an interest in the environment and wildlife.

Other styes of signs are also available.

I am tempted to do it.  Last fall when I planted bulbs in the tree pits in front of our house I had a lot of little kids on the block asking me what the heck I was doing.  They seemed really interested in checking out the weird-looking bulbs and surprised that they wouldn’t come up until the following spring.  (And believe me, I took this opportunity to drive home the message that the flowers won’t come up if people throw their trash there or let their dogs use it as a bathroom – sigh.)

So I think a Certified National Wildlife Habitat sign might strike up some good conversations and maybe even inspire some neighborhood kids or families to take more of an interest in their own backyard.  Maybe that’s being a little too optimistic for my block in Brooklyn, but you never know…maybe there are some future bird-watchers out there.

I’ve already got a bit of a reputation as a “cat lady” because I trap-neuter-return (TNR) the local feral cats and provide them with some winter shelters and food.  Why not go all the way and become and official habitat for wildlife?

Thanks, Laguna Dirt, for the information and an awesome post!


  1. love your blog! thanks for spreading the word about the national wildlife habitat certification. (i have to admit i did not spring for the sign–it’s an extra $20 i think. but it only costs $20 to get certified–and you get their cool magazine!) i agree with you, though, that the sign is a simple way to nudge some of the neighbors to at least think about what’s going on in their backyards to support the natural habitat!

  2. We became a Certified Wildlife Habitat last year! You should totally do it! I’ve been meaning to hang our sign so the neighborhood can see and be inspired – maybe I’ll do that this weekend.

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