In nature, insects and animals don’t need our help. They can make their own nests, dig their own burrows and scratch out holes to live in.
But in the city and suburbs, they do need a bit of a helping hand. When people move into the suburbs and build houses, schools and shops - they end up removing 'green space' and insect and animal habitats for new developments, so it's important for us to create new areas for living creatures to call home. Our gardens can support lots of different and wonderful insect and animal species.
In addition to planting a variety of different animal and insect attracting plants, we can also build 'Habitat Hotels' (sometimes also known as Insect Hotels)
Most people call these Habitat Hotels (or species hotels), these can be wonderful addition to gardens, parks, and schools to encourage and support our natural wildlife.
Remember: As budding ecologists, it's important to observe and not touch! Don't put your fingers into holes in the garden or habitat hotel and don't disturb or touch insects or other wildlife.
Where to set up your habitat hotel
Take a look around your garden and see where you could locate a habitat hotel. The best places are in a protected spot in semi-shade, such as near a hedge or underneath a tree. Being near a pond or bird bath is also beneficial.
Some insects, such as solitary bees, prefer a sunnier spot, so a hotel for them can be positioned in a warm sunny location.
Choose a level, even surface
The Habitat Hotel may end up fairly heavy, so will need a firm base. For a basic structure you can use old pallets. For a basic structure you can use old pallets, fence palings or timber shelves. The more recycled materials you can use the better! Ensure that the structure is stable before filling it with nesting materials. If you use more than one pallet ensure there is an opening and that the structure is stable by securing one to the other.
What materials you can use