Posted by: Sandy Steinman | November 25, 2018

Yards With Non-Native Plants Create ‘Food Deserts’ for Bugs and Birds

Audubon  has an article on how your choice of garden plants has a major impact on birds and insects

“Each plant in your landscape you should think of as a bird feeder,” says Doug Tallamy, an entomologist at the University of Delaware who also worked on the study. “It either has food in it, or it doesn’t.” (Carolina Chickadees aren’t big users of actual bird feeders during nesting season, and, like most other birds, they do not feed birdseed to their chicks.)

Overall, Narango found way more insect food on native plants. That’s because a tree or shrub will only have bugs if the creatures recognize the plant as food. If they haven’t evolved together in the same ecosystem, bugs will probably steer clear of the greenery. For example, Narango searched scores of crepe myrtle trees, a non-native popular in landscaping. “I don’t think we ever found a caterpillar,” she says. Meanwhile, a neighboring oak tree crawls with dozens or more.

Read full article at Yards With Non-Native Plants Create ‘Food Deserts’ for Bugs and Birds | Audubon

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