There are lots of different ways you can make your backyard bush-friendly. By planting native flora, conserving water, removing fire hazards, being responsible for your pets as well as using non-toxic pesticides and fertilisers, you can help to encourage native wildlife into the area and reduce human impact on our precious bushland. The Bush Friendly Neighbour Brochure outlines some different things you can do in your backyard.
Thinking of adding new plants to your garden? Consider planting flora that is native to your particular area, not just Australia. These plants are more likely to attract wildlife and are less likely to overrun bush areas. To find out which plants will suit your backyard, see our plants page, download the Indigenous Plant Species List, or ask at a garden nursery. Find out more about weeds.
Where possible provide a range of habitats including canopy plants, mid-story and groundcover vegetation layers. Clumps of dense shrub are good, and you can plant trees to create aerial corridors.
Planting non-nectar, insect pollinated plants like wattle, native peas and tea-tree can encourage smaller insect-eating birds. If territorial birds like currawongs or noisy miners are a problem, reduce the number of plants that bear fruit and have heavy nectar (like hybrid grevilleas).
Before you make any major changes to your yard or garden, observe the area over time to see which birds and animals already visit the area. It may be that a particular corner of your yard is already beneficial for native wildlife.
Nestboxes are a great way to provide shelter to possums, micro-bats, gliders and hollow-nesting birds. These animals require hollow spaces to breed, and unfortunately many trees with naturally-occurring hollows have been cleared. Fix nestboxes up high and away from your house. For detailed information about building nestboxes for many different native birds and marsupials, download the article Nestboxes for Natives.