Community Wildlife Habitat

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Sunrise is certified as a Community Wildlife Habitat through National Wildlife FederationNWF Community Wildlife Habitat logo

In September 2019, the City of Sunrise successfully became one of the few cities in the nation to be recognized as a Community Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation (NWF). This truly is an important community effort and achievement, which required the help of many in our Community.

What is a Community Wildlife Habitat?

The Community Wildlife Habitatâ„¢ program is designed to encourage localities to achieve a critical mass of habitat suitable for native species. Communities earn community-wide certification by certifying individual properties (homes, parks, schools, businesses, and others) in their community as Certified Wildlife Habitats and by doing education and outreach in their community. Education and outreach points are earned by engaging community members in habitat restoration projects, providing resources like native plant lists, and communicating through websites and social media.

In Sunrise, we have over 200 certified wildlife habitats! And we continue to add more to meet the annual re-certification requirements. NWF Community Scorecard - Sunrise

Explore the City properties that are certified by viewing our ESRI Storymap.

Certified Schools in Sunrise include: All Saints Catholic, Bair Middle, Discovery Elementary, Franklin Academy, Nob Hill Elementary, Piper High, Sandpiper Elementary, Sawgrass Elementary, Village Elementary, Welleby Elementary, and Westpine Middle.

Thank you to our local business community that have certified their landscapes: American Express, BB&T Center, Lake Shore Plaza II, Lester's Diner, and Mattress Firm. 

Why is this important?

Sunrise is an urban area adjacent to a unique ecosystem - the Florida Everglades. Our area is home to a diverse array of wildlife: native and migrating birds, interesting insects, mammals, fish and marine life. All of these animals have a role to play in the health and quality of our environment. Many of them serve as natural pest control, such as ladybugs that feed on aphids. Others are productive pollinators, such as the, butterflies, hummingbirds, and bees that are vital to agriculture. Some balance the food chain, such as burrowing owls and native snakes which keep the rodent population in check.

Sunrise strives to protect our wildlife through preservation of greenspace, and targeted development of habitat. The Community Wildlife Habitatâ„¢ program provides a fun way for residents, businesses, students and local organizations to get involved in protecting our wild residents. Maintaining our Community Wildlife Habitat certification will strengthen the quality of our ecosystem, making us more resilient, and getting us further towards other goals outlined in the Sunrise Sustainability Action Plan.

 How Can You Help?

  • Visit our Be A Butterfly Hero page where you can learn how to create a butterfly habitat or certify an existing space.
  • Build a habitat as an individual project, or band together with your neighbors to certify a whole neighborhood.
  • Make sure you follow Florida Friendly principals.
  • Get involved in the wider regional effort. Visit the NatureScape Broward Volunteer page for information on getting involved with Florida Master Gardener, Florida Master Naturalist, Natural Wildlife Federation Habitat Stewards, and North American Butterfly Association.