Greenspace and the wildlife dependent on it are disappearing quickly around the world. These spaces, or habitats, support animals through their provisions of food, water, and shelter. A healthy habitat will retain local species and natural, unobstructed features such as creeks, rivers, and forests. East Decatur Greenway seeks to combat habitat loss by providing a healthy growing ecosystem for the natural community of Decatur.
Through the Atlanta Audobon Society’s Wildlife Sanctuary Program, East Decatur Greenway plans to become a certified wildlife habitat. The Society defines four basic components needed for a productive habitat:
- Food resources such as native plants, feeders, and insect habitats
- Water resources
- Shelter areas such as shrubs, rock piles, roosting boxes, and fallen logs
- Size of more than 50 square feet, less than half of which can have invasive species present
Then and Now
While East Decatur Greenway works towards certification, there have already been multiple measures taken to ensure habitat health and growth. Perhaps most obvious is the removal of the site’s gas station, taking away harmful chemicals and structures from the community. Following this, the addition of the rain garden brought in native species, many of which are favorites for pollinators. Most recently, goats took over the greenspace to eat away kudzu and other invasive vines on the property.
Learn more about these projects on the About page.
The Greenway is on its way to recovering from decades of pollution and contamination, but there have been many great results already– from otters playing in the creek to coyotes running through the rain garden to luna moths soaking up summer sun.