Canned Insect Hotel - instructions and tips

The Content Of The Article:

If you want to lure insects into your garden and provide them with shelter, you do not have to be a great craftsman. You can also build a canned insect hotel.

Insect hotel from a tin

Insects are very useful animals in the home garden. Unfortunately, nature offers them less and less suitable places to facilitate insect propagation. So they are already dependent on our help these days. For example, they help the little creatures by building a classic insect hotel. But you can also build a earwig from a clay pot or tinker an insect hotel from a tin. We would like to explain the latter to you in more detail here.

Which insects use this insect hotel?

An insect hotel made from a tin is particularly well suited to provide the wild bees with a suitable place to spend the winter. Depending on the filling material, however, other insects use the self-built hotel. Use tall plant stems and tubes, clay wasps and wall bees will feel very comfortable. If you want to create a suitable place for earwigs, it makes sense to use straw as filling material. Therefore, you should consider before the construction, which insects you want to offer a suitable home.

What you need for the construction of an insect hotel

Often you can find an endless list of materials needed to build an insect hotel. Therefore you could quickly lose the joy of the construction project. An insect hotel in the can is not only quick to build, but also requires only a few materials.


❍ a washed-out, clean box (at least 10 cm high)
❍ desired filling material such as:

  • Clay
  • bamboo
  • reed
  • straw
  • Stems of raspberries, blackberries, elderberries or deadwood
  • small branches

❍ a long band (for example: a cord or a thin wire)


❍ stable scissors
❍ hot glue
❍ pliers
❍ sandpaper
❍ Hammer
❍ nail

Instructions for the construction of the insect hotel

Step 1:

Before you start building, you should remove the can from the label and clean it well. Glue residues can be removed with dishwashing detergent. Then the can has to dry well.

Step 2:

To avoid injuring yourself on the can, you can use a pair of pliers to bend the top edge inward or sand it off with some sandpaper. This step is especially important if you are building an insect hotel together with children.

Step 3:

Then pick up the hammer and a large nail and punch small holes in the bottom of the can. So the air circulation in the insect hotel is secured.

Step 4:

Do you want to build a colorful insect hotel, now is the right time to beautify the can. You can remove the can, e.g. paint with waterproof colors or stick with colorful stickers. Then wait for the paint to dry well before proceeding to the next step.

Step 5:

While the can is drying, you can use the time to trim the plant stems or prepare the clay.

Insect hotel with plant stems:
To build an insect hotel with plant stems, the stems must be the same size as the tin. Once you have cut all the stems, you can stuff them into the tin. The can should be so full that nothing falls out when you turn it upside down.

Insect hotel with clay:
The can can be completely filled with clay. You can also fill one half of the can with plant stem and the other half of the can with clay. Then you need to drill about five centimeters deep holes in the clay. This will help the female insects, because they save the strenuous digging and can immediately move into their new home.

Insect hotel with straw:
If you want earwigs to provide a new home, you can fill the entire can with straw. Again, you must make sure that the can is completely filled with straw and this does not fall out if possible. If that does not work out so well, you can put the insect hotel on the ground later instead of hanging it up. Earwigs are mainly on the ground anyway and will also move into their new hotel.

Step 6:

If you have provided the insect hotel with the desired filling material, you are almost done with the crafting. All you have to do now is decide if and where you would like to hang the insect hotel. To do this, tie a long cord or a thin wire around the front and back of the can to form a large loop in the middle. You can then hang up the insect hotel.

Important tips for an insect hotel from a tin

❶ If you decide to build an insect hotel out of a can, you should first think about which animals you want to offer a new home. Not every insect likes every filler.

❷ When filling the can, make sure that the edges are rounded. This not only prevents injuries to humans, but also protects the delicate wings of insects.

❸ Be sure to choose one or a maximum of two different fillers. Several materials should not be mixed, because many insects do not understand each other. If you want to use several materials, you can fill several cans with different materials and glue them together with hot glue. This creates a large insect hotel with various "rooms".

❹ If you have to hang up the insect hotel on a tree, a strong band is needed. Especially if you want to hang several cans together. These can be very heavy depending on the filling material.

❺ The right place is another important point. Hang the new insect hotel best on a tree and direct the entrance to the south. So the entrance is always sunny and the insects find it easier.

❻ Hang the insect hotel in your garden, then make sure that there are many flowering plants nearby. This is especially important for bees, because the flowers and shrubs serve as a source of food.

Video Board: How to build a Bug Hotel - Wildlife Connections.

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