Weed Wrangles Help Protect Bird Habitat at Winslow Woods; City Asking Residents to Volunteer a Hand to Help

A male Northern Cardinal flies towards a bird feeder, March 18, 2019 in Bloomington, Indiana. (Photo by Jeremy Hogan/The Bloomingtonian)

Staff report

BLOOMINGTON, IN — June 20, 2023

A dedicated group of are joining forces to protect the habitats of the diverse bird species that call Bloomington’s city parks home.

A series of events called “Weed Wrangles” have been organized, inviting residents to join the cleanup efforts at Winslow Woods from 8 am to 10 am each morning this week. These gatherings provide an opportunity for like-minded individuals to connect, learn from each other, and contribute to the preservation of Bloomington’s natural environment. Those interested can register for the Weed Wrangles at the following link: https://bit.ly/3DDm78l.

Bloomington’s City Parks are hot spots for 74 different bird species. From the vibrant indigo bunting, which finds solace along railroad corridors and edges, to the majestic screech owls and pileated woodpeckers that rely on nesting in the cavities of dead and standing trees, these birds play crucial roles in maintaining the delicate balance of our ecosystem.

To ensure the continued thriving of these avian populations, community participation is crucial. The initiative seeks the help of residents to protect the edges of the parks, and they have outlined some simple yet impactful steps everyone can take. First, residents are encouraged to mow their lawns only up to the boundary edge, allowing the grassy areas adjacent to the parks to serve as essential habitats for birds and other wildlife.

In addition, utilizing the city’s sanitation services for yard waste, such as leaves, grass clippings, brush, potting soil, and composting them in designated areas in their yards, is another effective way to prevent the spread of invasive species into the parks. Proper disposal of trash, pet waste, and other unwanted items through city sanitation, recycling, or donation also helps maintain the cleanliness and integrity of the parks.

One critical aspect of protecting the edges of these green spaces is controlling invasive plant species. Residents are urged to act in their own yards to prevent the encroachment of invasive

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