Protect Tennessee Wildlife and Keep the Winter Blues Away

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Around this time of year, Tennessee is enveloped in a magical winter wonderland. But as the holiday season approaches, this can also mean winter blues for many. According to the National Institute of Health, many people may feel sad as the days get shorter, taking away the good cheer that season is known for. But the solution for many might lie in the great outdoors, surrounded by Tennessee’s breathtaking natural landscapes.

If you feel sad or even less active in the winter, being outside in nature can be a great pick-me-up. The crisp air and quiet beauty of Tennessee’s natural landscapes can offer peace and rejuvenation.  Studies have shown that volunteering in nature can improve mood, reduce stress, and boost mental well-being. Participating in outdoor activities such as litter cleanups can help protect wildlife habits in Tennessee, add to the beauty of your surroundings and give you a great sense of accomplishment and belonging.  

Litter, aside from being unsightly, presents a severe threat to the continued existence of many animals in Tennessee. It disrupts animal habitats, increases pollution, and introduces potentially toxic substances into the environment. Animals may attempt to use litter as housing, as temperatures get cooler, and can also ingest or become entangled in trash and debris. Our native Tennessee wildlife faces heightened vulnerability during winter, but with your help, we can ensure they have the chance to rely on natural resources rather than navigating hazards created by human debris.

Here are a few ways you can benefit from being outdoors and keep Tennessee’s wildlife safe, too:

Winter Blues Begone: Finding Joy in Nature

Exploring Tennessee’s scenic landscapes through winter hiking not only provides exercise but also offers the chance to witness the beauty of winter wildlife. And while you’re hiking, consider taking an extra step towards environmental stewardship by picking up litter along the trails. Keeping the natural habitats clean ensures a healthier ecosystem for the wildlife and a more enjoyable experience for fellow nature enthusiasts. By actively engaging in litter prevention efforts, not only does it keep our beautiful landscape tidy, but it turns out, it’s a mood booster for us humans too!

Eco-Friendly Bird Watching Adventures

Bird watching in Tennessee can be a rewarding experience as many species become more visible during the colder months. On your watch, consider bringing along a reusable water bottle to minimize your footprint. You can also check out ebird, a real-time, online bird checklist program, and help a global community of bird watchers. By transforming your bird-watching excursions into eco-trips, you not only appreciate the beauty of winter wildlife but actively participate in conservation research and efforts.

Winter Wonderland for Wildlife

Winter can be a challenging time for many animals in Tennessee as food sources become scarce, and temperatures drop. Consider repurposing your old Christmas tree to serve as a makeshift animal shelter for birds and other animals, or get creative by crafting eco-friendly feeders using pinecones and other natural items. Learn more about Tennessee backyard animal basics from the Wildlife Resource Agency: like the different types of wildlife habitats, what food Tennessee wildlife eat and more. You can also create and certify your backyard habitat to help Tennessee wildlife.  By incorporating sustainable practices into our efforts, we not only support wildlife but also contribute to a greener and more environmentally conscious winter.

Take Care of Winter Blues While Taking Out The Trash 

Mental health, litter prevention and animal protection overlap considerably during winter. This winter, take the opportunity to enrich your well-being and take the winter blues away while contributing to the preservation of Tennessee’s most treasured resource – its environment. Involve yourself with local environmental groups, spread the word and help make a difference for Tennessee’s diverse ecosystems. Together, we can protect Tennessee wildlife and the pristine winter scenery.  


 Tennessee Wildlife Federation – Trashing America the Beautiful

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