Liberty Elementary Student Turns ‘Backyard Bird Sanctuary’ into Official Certified Wildlife Habitat

Evan McTish, Student at Liberty Elementary School, created a ‘Backyard Bird Sanctuary’ for his Math/Science Capstone project. 

Students were tasked with identifying one human activity or one naturally occurring factor that positively affects their environment. They had the option to choose from a variety of topics including, but not limited to, weather, backyard bird feeders, vegetable gardens, pollinator gardens, etc. to make observations and collect data to use as evidence.

Evan knew early to late spring was an excellent time to watch the many species of birds migrate through north-central Pennsylvania and focused his project to see if he could influence birds to come to his backyard.

To get started, he provided bird feeders and water for the birds early in the morning and brought them back inside at night. He used a variety of food types and scheduled bird watching observations throughout the day. Evan also researched his topic online and consulted with other birdwatchers.

Evan observed 16 different species of birds and found evidence to support his claim that he indeed could influence birds to visit his sanctuary.

“My family and I enjoyed this project so much that we decided to apply to become an official Certified Wildlife Habitat. I learned how we can work as a team to provide food and shelter to our local wildlife,” said Evan.

To learn more or apply to have your own backyard registered as a habitat visit the National Wildlife Federation at