Often times when we are gardening we try our best to keep animals away from our plants. While there are definitely a number of pests that do cause issues, there are many creatures that have a positive effect on your garden.

Let’s take a look at five animals that will keep your plants safer.

Ants

Did you know that ants themselves are actually farmers? Many varieties of ants have been known to tend to and fertilize fungi and have even been known to herd and raise other insects like aphids. Now, even if these are interesting facts, this isn’t how they will help your garden.

Instead, ants provide a lot of benefits just by going about their lives in the soil. While tunneling, the ants help to aerate the ground you are gardening in. Not only this, but studies have also found that ants help protect crops from other insects as well as pesticides do.

Birds of Prey

While ants may help keep away some of the smaller pests, they don’t really help all that much with bigger issues like squirrels, rabbits, rats, and other rodents. That’s where raptors (A.K.A. birds of prey) come in.

Birds like owls and hawks prey on small rodents that could be destroying plants or contaminating food with bacteria like salmonella. Now, what type of raptor you want to attract will come down to what type of pest you are trying to deal with.

For animals that come at night, you may want to look into a nocturnal hunter like an owl. If your issues are coming up more during the day, something like a hawk may be more appropriate.

Spiders

Spiders get a bit of a bad rap. It’s understandable, they are kind of terrifying. That said, they definitely use their terrifying appearance and abilities to good use in protecting you and your garden.

A spider’s web isn’t just a beautifully complex structure, it is an incredibly effective tool for catching problem insects on your property. From beetles to flies, mosquitos, and moths, spiders hunt them all. So next time, before you grab the newspaper, remember that these eight-legged guys are your friends.

Song Birds

You may think that a songbird could be dangerous to have around your garden. After all, why else would you need to put up a scarecrow if not to keep birds away?

But songbirds are not like some of the more damaging species to have in your garden. Instead, they are big fans of eating caterpillars, snails, beetles, and slugs. If you can attract songbirds to your property you will surely notice a huge reduction in the amount of damage that any of these insects are causing.

One of the best ways to attract songbirds is to plant more trees and shrubs on your property. While they may not look as interesting as some more exotic plants, it is recommended to stick with native plants when attracting local birds.

Bats

If you have ever tended to your garden on a warm summer evening, you have probably noticed just how many bats are flying around at that time of night. While at first glance you may think of them as creepy and vampiric creatures, but they actually provide some great pest control for you.

It has been found that a single brown bat can eat hundreds of mosquitos and other small bugs in a single night. They also have been known to eat many moths and caterpillars. Caterpillars are some of the most damaging insects when it comes to your garden.

Just like you would attract birds, you can place a bat house on your property to attract some of these furry flyers to help out around the garden. This will keep the bats outside and not living in your attic or home.

 

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I am founder of HomeandGardenDigest blog, where you can read about all living things. I have been a writer all my life, a collector of various interesting and old things, a traveler and an artist. Hobby and career paths have gone in many directions, from making miniature furniture to watercolor painting, fundraising for a symphony orchestra to selling antiques, from interior decorating to copyediting, from being a wife and mother to being a caregiver for family members with serious illnesses. Throughout the years I have learned and taught about all of these things and have been eager to share the information with a wider readership.

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