Urban landscapes can be converted into a sanctuaries for wildlife and in the process help improve and protect our natural resources. Plantings of native trees, shrubs, wildflowers and grasses can attract birds and butterflies and other animals, providing food and cover. In addition to bringing nature to your doorstep, many Urban Conservation practices can help improve the quality of our lakes, streams, and wetlands by reducing stormwater runoff.
Urbanization has greatly increased the amount of impervious surfaces creating excessive volumes of stormwater runoff in our watersheds. Prior to urban developoment most of the rainfall and snowmelt infiltrated into the ground, now flow quickly and directily through storm sewers and into our lakes, streams and wetlands. These larger water flows increases flooding and erosion problems as well as delivers large amounts of nutrients and sediments into our waters. The use of rain gardens, rain barrels, pervious paving and other runoff reduction methods can greatly increase on-site treatment of stormwater and help improve the quality of the lakes and streams we all enjoy.