Web Resources for Master Gardeners & Naturalists

Compiled by John P. Loegering, Wildlife Ecologist, University of Minnesota

Below I have compiled several web links that may be useful. The list is not comprehensive, but will be a good start. If you find other links that you believe warrant inclusion, please email them to me. This page started as a resource for Master Gardeners and it is still oriented toward gardening but I will be adding topics of interest to Master Naturalists as time permits.

Several sites are commercial enterprises (i.e., .com) that had good information at the time I viewed them. Most of these sites are honorable; however, some may have marketing obsjectives that conflict with good gardening or wildlife objectives, or may modify their pages in the future. Please alert me to any of these when you find such conflicts. There also are several highly commercial sites that I found or that other gardeners recommended that I chose not to include because of their aggressive, commercial nature.

My criteria for inclusion was that they 1) have good science-based content, 2) are stable and not likely to change (no one likes a bunch of dead links), and 3) are reasonably objective in their presentation. Most sites satisfy these criteria; however some do not. I am assuming that the reader is astute enough to see that a raccoon trap manufacturer is likely to strongly recommend trapping as an animal damage solution. It might be one solution, but not THE solution.

Over the years, the value of this site has certainly declined.

Several sources are in Portable Document Format (.pdf) and require Acrobat Reader for viewing. Get Acrobat Reader

General Sites

Presentations that I have recorded for various audiences.

Attracting Wildlife

Turn your yard into a haven for wildlife

Attracting Birds to your Yard and Garden

Coping with Nuisance Wildlife

Woodlands and Wildlife (not really a Master Gardener topic, but of interest to some readers)

Species-Specific Materials


Bird Control



Both urban and rural deer present a huge challenge to gardening (or forestry, for that matter). There are several sites out there and we post only a few here. Remember, some of these are private sites that are not necessarily the best science; however, they do have some effective techniques listed.

A recent peer-refereed scientific wildlife study has evaluated a variety of deer repellents and found Plantskydd and Deer Away Big Game Repellent were generally the most effective for long-term repellent properties. For more details, see
Wagner, K. K. and Dale L. Nolte. 2001. Comparison of active ingredients and delivery systems in deer repellents. Wildlife Society Bulletin 29:322-330.

Hummingbirds and Butterflies
Your local nursery or garden store could be the best source for you to find locally-adapted hummingbird and butterfly plants that thrive in your area. Moreover, Landscaping for Wildlife is a good reference.


Pocket Gophers










Various Conservation Organizations have programs and information targeted at integrating wildlife into backyards and gardening.

Prairie Restorations, Inc is a private corporation with a long history of planting prairies throughout Minnesota. I generally try to avoid recommending commercial resources, but these folk will lay some nice groundwork in your understanding of what is involved, what it will cost, and what factors play into your decision on establishing a native prairie community. Nonetheless, this is personal, not an official endorsement.

Published Materials that may be quite helpful

Henderson, C. 1987. Landscaping for Wildlife. Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Available from MN DNR. A great resource with wonderful plant lists. Cost: ~$12.
Henderson, C. L., C. Dindorf, and F. Rozumalski. 1998. Lakescaping for Wildlife & Water Quality. Minnesota Bookstore. 176pp. ISBN: 0964745127 Cost: ~$20.
Henderson, C. 1995. Wild about Birds: The DNR Bird Feeding Guide. Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Henderson, C. Woodworking for Wildlife. Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
The Restore Your Shore instructional CD ROM is a powerful multimedia program for shoreland owners and professionals to use in implementing shoreland restoration and protection projects.
Landscaping for Wildlife in the Pacific Northwest by Russel Link. 1999. University of Washington Press. Cost: ~$30. Note that the concepts are applicable but some recommended plants will not make it in Minnesota

Prevention and Control of Wildlife Damage by Scott E. Hygnstrom, Robert M. Timm, and Gary E. Larson. 1994. University of Nebraska Cooperative Extension. This is the ‘bible’ for managing a variety of wildlife-human interactions. Cost: Books ($45), CD-ROM ($43), or both ($65).
It is out of print at this time but available for FREE at http://icwdm.org/handbook/index.asp

Many of the Minnesota publication are available from:

Minnesota's Bookstore
660 Olive Street
St. Paul, MN 55155
(651) 297-3000 Twin Cities metro, or nationwide toll free (800) 657-3757
TTY: (651) 282-5077 or (800) 657-3706
fax. (651) 215-5733

Search Terms
Although sites on the internet vary substantially in quality and appropriateness of information, we have found the following search term or strings helpful. Use them in your favorite search engine (e.g., Google, Yahoo, etc.). Note that we have left off suffixes to make the searches as broad as possible. Good luck.

Wildlife Gardening
Gardening bird
Butterfly garden
Bird garden (or hummingbird garden)
Deer proof
Urban deer control
Deer resistant plants
Animal control (i.e. rabbit control)

For Extension Educators:

Web site created by John P. Loegering, with assistance from Jessica Larson and Lisa Loegering. University of Minnesota.

Disclaimer: This site reflects the opinions of the author and not that of the Regents of the University of Minnesota. Feedback is encouraged.

© 2000, Regents of the University of Minnesota and the Department of Horticultural Science. All rights reserved.


The views and opinions expressed in this page are strictly those of the page author.
The contents of this page have not been reviewed or approved by the University of Minnesota.