Out in the wild bugs and other insects have no problem finding places to nest or hibernate, but in our tidy gardens this is often not the case. The answer is to provide one of these rather strange looking contraptions known as bug hotels. As you see from the picture above these consist of a collection of materials inside a small birdhouse like structure which provides shelter for the insects. This article by Sierra Bright which I found on the Natural Living Ideas website gives five reasons why you should build a bug hotel and tells you how to do it.
Insects are an integral part of a successful garden. Some beneficial insects can actually help control and reduce the populations of detrimental insects, and many are responsible for the pollination of flowers, both ornamental and for food crops. By providing these insects with inviting homes, you can help promote their wellbeing and contribute to increasing their numbers. When spring arrives, you?ll have all the pollinators on hand that you need and many of your guests will devour the unwanted pests in your garden, getting the season off to a good start.
1. Broaden your understanding of nature
We are all afraid of things we don?t understand, and insects often fall into this category. Sometimes their unusual appearance puts us off. Sometimes it?s the fact that they have flown or crawled somewhere we don?t want them, and we?re startled by their sudden appearance. We don?t know why they are there or what they want, and there may also be fears about a bite or sting. By building a bug hotel, you will be able to observe who checks in and how they live. It is easier to see what they feed on and whether or not they are aggressive or a threat to you or your garden. Once you gain an understanding of these tiny creatures, you?ll be less likely to be afraid of them when they make an appearance in your garden.
2. Beneficial insects need love too
Many of your garden?s pollinators are solitary insects like butterflies, moths, ladybugs and solitary bees. These insects do not live in colonies and must find a warm, dry space to build their nests and to hibernate over the winter. The decline in bee populations has been in the news for the last few years. With their numbers dropping around the world, these insects could be our garden?s next best friends.
See more at Natural Living Ideas