tampabay.com

Man's property declared official wildlife habitat site

By SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Published January 9, 2007


The National Wildlife Federation announced this month that the Citrus Springs property of Gene Kolen has been certified as an official wildlife habitat site.

The property on Tranquil Drive attracts a variety of birds, butterflies and other wildlife.

With the help of the federation, many habitat enthusiasts have turned their yards and open spaces into enticing wildlife refuges.

NWF began the Backyard Wildlife Habitat program in 1973 and has since certified more than 73,000 habitats nationwide.

The majority represent the work and commitment of individuals and families providing habitat near their homes, but NWF has also certified more than 2,400 schools and hundreds of business and community sites.

Any habitat enthusiast can create a backyard habitat and learn the rewards of gardening for wildlife.

NWF teaches the importance of environmental stewardship by providing guidelines for making landscapes more hospitable to wildlife.

To become certified, a property must provide the four basic elements that all wildlife needs: food, water, shelter and places to raise young. In addition, the site must employ sustainable gardening practices.

The mission of the National Wildlife Federation is to inspire Americans to protect wildlife for our children's future. The Florida Wildlife Federation is a state affiliate of NWF, with offices in Tallahassee and Naples, and has been operating since 1937.

Editor's note: This information came from the National Wildlife Federation.