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Climate Champion creating a welcoming space for wildlife

Lauderdale resident Lou Cunningham has been named this month’s Climate Champion by community group Clarence Climate Action for transforming her property into a wildlife paradise.

When Ms Cunningham lived on 10-hectares at Eaglehawk Neck, she was a member of the Tasmanian Land Conservancy’s Land for Wildlife program and shortly after moving to Lauderdale five-years-ago she signed up to its suburban cousin, Gardens for Wildlife.

“It was nearly all lawn when I arrived, there was no shade and I didn’t want to waste water keeping it green, plus I love trees. I wanted a native garden that would look after itself once it was established,” Ms Cunningham said.

“I had to think of what would flower in different seasons and what would provide habitat for different birds and animals.

“We need safe corridors for birds and animals to roam and find food. As our suburbs become more built-up, native gardens give wildlife a better chance of survival.”

The Land For Wildlife program, facilitated by the Tasmanian Land Conservancy, helps private landowners with nature conservation with the message that everyone, no matter how small their garden, can contribute to the survival of wildlife and increase awareness of protecting natural diversity.

As well as the Gardens for Wildlife logo Ms Cunningham’s fence has a ‘go slow’ sign with an image of a bandicoot and in spring she puts up a ‘watch out for blue tongues’ notice for visitors.

“I encourage other people to register with Gardens for Wildlife, even if they only have a few pots on a balcony to attract bees and insects. It costs $30, which covers the sign plus helpful information about what to plant,” Ms Cunningham said.

“Since joining I have planted callistemons, correas, lemon scented myrtle, running postman, pincushion hakeas, native boronia, banksias, westringias and white flag iris.”

To register your garden email gardensforwildlife@tasland.org.au

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About the Author: Simon Andrews

Simon is a passionate journalist and finds joy in uncovering and sharing locally resonant stories, immersing himself in the hearts of communities. He can often be spotted out and about sourcing grassroots news for the Hobart Observer and its sister papers.

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