The Content Of The Article:
- What is an insect hotel?
- What brings an insect hotel in the garden?
- Beneficials in the insect hotel
- Wild bee hotel
- Buy or build insect hotel?
What is an insect hotel?
As an insect hotel or "Nützlingshotel" one calls artificially created accommodations for useful insects. These consist mostly of dry branches and twigs, straw, bamboo or reed, pine cones, hardwood pieces with pre-drilled holes, perforated bricks and potsherds. These materials are integrated at will and the desired insects in a mostly divided into several compartments, covered wooden box. Then hang it or put it in a dry and warm place in the garden or on the house wall.
It is important at an insect hotel that the site is dry and warm and the needs of insects are met. From a design point of view, however, you have plenty of scope
What brings an insect hotel in the garden?
The advantages of a well-frequented insect hotel are obvious: Wild bees and other nectar collectors ensure the fertilization of the plants and thus a high yield in the garden. The lacewing larvae, ladybirds, parasitic wasps and other hunters decimate aphids and other pests so their populations do not get out of hand. In addition, an insect hotel is simply an exciting craft project for children and nature-loving gardeners who want to support and observe the wildlife, because there is always something new to discover.
Start photo gallery
Resident of an insect hotel (6)
A bumblebee on the way to collecting nectar and pollen: The insects can pollinate up to 1000 flowers per day
The pollination performance of endangered wild bees is higher than that of honeybees. That makes them in the garden important harvesters
The delicate lacewing feeds on the nectar of the flowers. Their larva is called aphid lion and in addition to aphids also cleans leaf suckers and spider mites
The ladybird and its larva feed mainly on aphids
The larva of the hoverfly also helps in the decimation of aphids. The adult insect, on the other hand, contributes to plant pollination
Beneficials in the insect hotel
Insects have different demands on a dwelling. Therefore, it is important to think about which insects you want to provide a home. We have put together a few beneficials and their preferences for you:
- lacewings: Their larvae live as predators and feed on aphids. The later lacewing, on the other hand, thrives on flower nectar and becomes a plant pollinator. As a dwelling she prefers a box filled with wood wool, which is provided with narrow slits as an input option and painted red or brown. The colored paint is important because it has been scientifically proven that lacewings react positively to the colors red and brown.
- Parasitic wasps: The humanly harmless, tiny parasitic wasps are helpful pest controllers. They hunt other insects. For them are Hartzholzblöcke, which were provided with at least 5 centimeters deep holes (diameter 2 to 8 millimeters) were ideal. In these holes, some types of parasitic wasp leave a trapped and stunned insect to which they have inoculated an egg and seal the hole with a clay-like paste that they produce themselves. From the egg develops a larva, which feeds on the trapped insect and leaves the tube the following year as a fully developed wasp.
- Ladybug: Both the adult beetles and their larvae feed on aphids or gall bladder larvae, making them welcome gardeners. When it comes to winter, ladybirds in some large groups go in search of suitable winter quarters. If you want to support them, you should add a small box with dry leaves and an entrance slot to your insect hotel.
- Wild bees: In addition to bumblebees and honey bees, wild bees are great pollinators for the garden. To offer you a home is not only an important nature protection aspect, but also worthwhile for the gardener. Really well suited for solitary bees hardwood pieces, such as ash wood. Here, holes with a diameter of three to eight millimeters are drilled perpendicular to the grain. The important thing is that they are at least five inches deep. Alternatively, Strandfalzziegel have proven to be a good habitation. To protect against predators, the pieces of wood can be protected with coarse-meshed net or hare wire. A distance of 20 centimeters to the entrances has proven to be sufficient to keep birds away.
- bumblebees: There are several types of bumblebees, but they have one thing in common: They are very good pollinators and are active at low temperatures early in the year. Providing you a home is comparatively easy.You need a dry dwelling (for example, a wooden box) that has a 35mm diameter entry hole and is designed with kapok, a fine plant fiber.
For the insects mentioned, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find a suitable natural place for nesting or wintering. Above all, this is due to an exaggerated sense of order in the garden: if you dispose of garden waste such as leaves or shrubs in the bio-waste bin, you will also reduce the potential habitats of beneficial insects.
Wild bee hotel
An easy-to-rebuild version of a wild bee hotel: dry reed or bamboo cane, which is protected from moisture with tiles, is often purchased from wild bees
Buy or build insect hotel?
Anyone who is clumsy or has too little time can buy high-quality insect hotels in the garden trade. But more individual and decorative are usually the self-built models. Especially when children are involved, it is a real experience and it leads the young playfully to nature conservation. In both cases, however, one should pay attention to quality in the processing and in the choice of materials, because there are some stumbling blocks, which later make life unnecessarily difficult:
- Non-deposited hardwood: If holes are drilled in, they tend to rupture during drying and form dangerous wood chips for the animals
- Softwood: The soft wood is dangerous even in a dry location, as the temperature fluctuations cause the fibers to rise, obstruct the access or, in the worst case, can injure the brood. Also, the resin bubbles included therein are not ideal for insects
- Wooden discs with holes in the end grain: Although they are decorative, but unsuitable because holes in the end grain usually tear and wood shards arise here again. You therefore always drill the holes across the fiber
- Fouled wood: If decay fungi are already at work, they should no longer be used as they degrade the cellulose fibers
- Perforated brick: Punched bricks are not well received if the edges are too sharp or the holes are too big. Here, however, you can take action yourself and file off the edges and reduce the holes with clay
- Fresh bamboo cane: Bamboo is basically good, but it has to be dry and stay dry as it tends to break during drying
- Location: The correct placement is the alpha and omega. The Insect Hotel should not get wet or should the direct midday sun shine on it