Why are Native Species Important?
Native plant and animal species are important for many different reasons. They help stabilize soil, purifying air, filtering water and most improtantly supporting native wildlife populations. Native plants are already adapted to our environment and have a signifigant impact on decreasing flooding and droughts as well as mitigating extreme temperatures. Native species have developed over hundreds or thousands of years in a particular region or ecosystem. Planting natives helps conserve biodiversity, provides food and shelter specifically for native wildlife. Once established native plants will thrive in their natural environment and require little to no maintenance.
Long Island is home to many types of plants and animals all competing for food and space to grow.
Piping plover - Long Islands smallest shorebird that can be found feeding on small crustaceans, insects and other marine invertebrates.
Click the images below to enlarge
Learn more about the ecological benefits and importance of Native Species, share information with others
Planting native means less watering, maintenance and it is better for local wildlife
Volunteer with organizations like LIISMA, Save the Great South Bay, The Nature Conservancy, NYS Parks and with the NCSWCD to help your local community
Opossum are North Americas only native marsupial, they are rarely seen because they are nocturnal. Far from a nuisance, opossums eat small fruits, snails and insects like ticks. The size of a cat with grey fur, it finds shelter in hollowed out trees. Possums low boy temperature allows them to fight off disease and survive throughout the winter.
White Oak Quercus alba
Acorns are a valuable source of wildlife food. More than 180 different kinds of birds and mammals use oak acorns as food; among them are squirrels, blue jays, crows, red-headed woodpeckers, deer, turkey, quail, mice, chipmunks, ducks, and raccoons. White oak twigs and foliage are browsed by deer especially in clearcuts less than 6 years old. White oak is sometimes planted as an ornamental tree because of its broad round crown, dense foliage, and purplish-red to violet-purple fall coloration.