Author Laura Brook
Working together as a team has taken on a new meaning at Sussex Wildlife Trust with the launch of Nature Street.
We are encouraging next-door neighbours throughout the county to not just talk over the garden fence but to take some small steps to allow wildlife to move freely between their gardens.
Each garden or green space in Sussex, however small, can make a valuable contribution to the health and numbers of creatures that survive in 21st century cities, towns and villages. Wild creatures are not just found in rural areas, and indeed many species can thrive in an urban environment with just a little help from their friends.
For example a hedgehog can travel over a mile each night searching for food and if one is living in your street all we are asking is that you ease the way for it to move from one garden to another. Could you persuade your neighbours to open up suitable small gaps in hedges, fences and walls to allow easy access. The same applies to amphibians such as frogs, toads and newts looking for ponds to breed in or searching out suitable hibernation sites such as stone or log piles. For creatures such as bats, butterflies, bees and birds it is important that gardens carry food plants to support their survival, so planting that lasts throughout the year can offer much needed nutrients for the different stages of their life cycle.
Freedom of movement to find food and shelter and breeding sites could prove to be the vital link in helping many creatures survive habitat destruction and climate change. Isolation makes them vulnerable and linking several gardens in one street, and then on to the next street and the next, offers a lifeline.
Interested in getting your street on board, then please download the Nature Street resource pack from our website to find out how easy it is to get started. www.naturestreet.org.uk