The Use of
Chemicals
  Avoid the use of chemicals in your yard
(weed & bug killers, lawn fertilizers, etc).

There are many environmentally friendly solutions available that simply require a little bit of
research to find the eco-friendly answers you are looking for. Many chemical solutions can
have a negative impact on beneficial insects and wildlife creatures, can negatively affect
water supplies and can contribute to pollution.

As an example, song thrush populations have declined 70% since 1970, and one of their
primary food sources are garden slugs and snails. When using slug pellets to kill slugs and
snails, you are also wiping out a valuable food source for these birds.

Further, many insects provide a valuable service in the environment. They pollinate plants.
Insect pollinators include flies, bees, wasps, beetles, moths, butterflies, and other insects. As
they feed on flower nectar, they carry pollen from flower to flower which promotes plant
reproduction. Without pollinating insects, some plant species may not reproduce in a local
area. This change in plant diversity ultimately will affect wildlife diversity. These plants might
have provided food and shelter for various animals. Without the plants, many wildlife species
may not be able to survive in the immediate area. Our native environment is a delicate
balance that depends on the other native species for survival.

Instead of chemicals, encourage insects that eat pest species. For example, encourage
ladybugs to live in your garden. They eat aphids. Allow spiders and paper wasps to exist
around your house. They eat lots of kinds of insects. Some birds eat spiders. Also,
hummingbirds use spider webs in building their nests. Even some plants, such as marigolds,
deter insects. Bats eat lots of mosquitoes, so consider a bat house.
 
  Be careful with the use and disposal of chemicals in your home.

Did you know cleaning your home can be harmful to your health? Many common household
cleaners contain toxic solvents, fragrances, disinfectants, and other ingredients that can
pollute the air and cause respiratory, skin, and other reactions. Choose biodegradable
cleaning products so that the chemicals have fewer negative impacts on the soil and water
system.

*NEVER pour antifreeze, gasoline, oil or other chemicals on the ground, into storm sewers or
down the drain. Take these toxic substances to your local waste disposal facility.