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Homes for Wildlife

This holiday season why not give a special gift that helps wildlife, feeds your creativity, and provides a memorable activity to share with a loved one.  The Sunshine Coast Wildlife Project wants to help you!   We are offering a unique opportunity to connect with a friend or family member by building your own owl nest box, bat house, or mason bee box.

BEST OF ALL, IT IS FREE!  The Wildlife Project is encouraging the installation of homes for wildlife on the Sunshine Coast by paying for the cost of materials.  In return, participants build, install, and commit to monitoring the wildlife home through our wildlife stewardship program. The goal of this project is to provide more habitat for local species-at-risk, investigate best practices for wildlife home designs and placements, and encourage the monitoring of animal populations.

You can build a wildlife home by purchasing one of our building kits, with all materials and easy construction instructions included; all you will need is a screwdriver.  Or, if you are feeling extra handy, build a wildlife home from scratch using one of the templates on our website.  Once your home is built, install it following our recommended best practices, send us a photo of the installed home, and commit to monitoring, and the Wildlife Project will reimburse you for the cost of the kit or materials! If you need help with installation, please contact us.

If you are unable to build one yourself, don't worry - you can still join.  Simply purchase a ready-made bat, owl or bee box and contact the Wildlife Project to sign up.   Ready-made wildlife boxes can be purchased from a variety of local suppliers including the Lagoon Society's EarthFair store in Madeira Park.  For pre-made homes, we will reimburse 50% of the cost and also provide advice, support and other goodies (t-shirts, stewardship guides!)

To join the Homes for Wildlife program, please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 604-989-1007.

The Homes for Wildlife Program aims to benefit the following species-at-risk:

bat 240
: Residents need only look up to the sky at sunset to enjoy the aerial acrobatics of bats as they hunt for insects, an activity essential to the health of our agricultural and forest ecosystems. Unfortunately, bat populations are declining due to habitat loss, human disturbance, pollution and disease; half of BC's bats are listed as species-at-risk.

To improve roosting habitat for bats, residents are encouraged to build, install and monitor bat houses.  We are happy to promote bat house designs that have been tested for decades as well as new innovative approaches.  Our ready-made kits will include simple single chamber bat boxes, suitable for installation in a sunny south or east facing location on the side of a heated house.  For those planning to build their own houses, bat house designs may include a single chamber bat box, a multi-chamber nursery box, a rocket box, or an "Uncle George" design.  

Please click here to learn more about the Homes for Bats Program.


blue mason bee-240NATIVE BEES: Few realize that in addition to managed European honeybees, British Columbia is also home to over 400 species of native bees. These species play a vital role as pollinators both for human crops, as well as plants that provide food for birds and a diversity of other animals. Since the 1990s biologists have observed a decline in native bees, attributed to a combination of stressors, including habitat loss and fragmentation, pesticide use, invasive species and climate change.

To improve habitat for native pollinators, we encourage community members to build and install bee boxes designed to house the native Blue Orchard Mason Bees (Osmia lignaria). These shy, solitary, non-aggressive bees propagate easily and are extremely effective pollinators, particularly of fruit trees.



screech owl bryant olsen close up-240SCREECH-OWLS: Symbols of wisdom, owls hold a special place in our imaginations.  Of particular concern is the federally Threatened and provincially Blue-listed Western Screech-Owl (coastal kennicottii subspecies).  These adorable small owls have experienced dramatic population declines since the 1990s, both in the south coast area, where they have nearly disappeared, and in the northern part of the range. Loss of cavity-bearing nest trees and predation by expanding Barred Owl populations have been identified as important factors.

Screech-owls nest in natural tree cavities and abandoned woodpecker holes. The size of screech-owl populations in some regions is limited by the number of available cavities. With forest harvesting and urban development, the number of standing dead and dying trees has decreased, reducing availability of potential nest trees.

However, the Western Screech-Owl is also known to readily accept man-made nest boxes for both nesting and roosting. Supplying artificial cavities, in the form of nest boxes, can be an important enhancement measure for this species where natural tree cavities are lacking.

To improve nesting habitat for Screech-Owls, we encourage community members to build, install and monitor owl nest boxes. Contact us to obtain a nest box kit including all the materials you will need along with step-by-step construction instructions. Or build it yourself following this owl box construction template.  Once you are ready to put up your owl box, please contact us for installation instructions.


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