Dorset needs safe havens for struggling wildlife

Dorset Wildlife Trust (DWT) has launched the new campaign, ‘Make Wildlife Welcome’, to encourage local people to give garden wildlife struggling to survive a helping hand this autumn and winter.

The State of Nature report in 2013 revealed that 60% of the UK species studied have been declining in recent years, however many of these species are known to live in our gardens, such as starlings and hedgehogs. 

DWT’s new campaign is aimed at anyone with a garden, and even those without a garden, to spread the word that everyone can do something – no matter how small, to give our precious wildlife a fighting chance this year.

Anyone who makes a pledge to Make Wildlife Welcome in their garden will receive a free book ‘Bringing a garden to life’ which tells the story of how our friends and supporters, Wiggly Wigglers created their own garden for wildlife, and how you can do it too.  They will also receive wildflower seeds, free literature and downloads, and expert advice and information from Dorset Wildlife Trust – 365 days a year.

DWT’s Community Conservation Officer, and Wildlife Gardening Coordinator, Joy Wallis said; “Many people think that gardening is only a spring or summer activity, but there’s lots you can be doing to help garden wildlife throughout the colder months.  For example, if it is very cold, a hedgehog could wake from hibernation, and it will need a warm, safe place to stay and high energy food, to ensure its survival.  It is surprising just how many wild animals will be ‘wintering’ in your garden, so please do resist the temptation to be too tidy!”    

Anyone who supports this campaign will find out about the practical things that can be done from DWT, including insuring there is always some unfrozen water, leaving food out at ground level for passing birds and creating areas of shelter for wildlife in your garden.

Joy added: “We find that people who spend time in their garden feel good about making a difference for wildlife, and also see benefits to their mental and physical health.  It’s a great way to keep active all year round!”

If you would like to make a pledge to help wildlife for just £3 a month, we have everything you need to get started, or help support an established wildlife friendly garden.  Visit to make your pledge to help wildlife.  Keep up with stories, tips and information on Twitter @DorsetWildlife #makewildlifewelcome.