Insect hotel set up: the ideal location

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Insect hotel set up: the ideal location: insect

At a time when such useful insects as wild bees, bumblebees, earwigs, lacewings or even butterflies are becoming less and less due to pesticides used in agriculture and insufficient food sources, installing an insect hotel is even more important. In order for the animals to adopt this nesting and hibernation aid, however, the site must be planned precisely. Most comfortable insects feel in a sunny place in the midst of a fragrant sea of ​​flowers.

The right time to set up the insect hotel

The best time to set up an insect hotel are the months between March and September, as the animals settle in such a habitation during the warm season continuously. For example, wild bees swarm in March and have their peak season in April and May - the odds are that the insect hotel is populated by relatively easy-to-get-to-be red mason bees. Most other beneficial insects - such as lacewings or earwigs - on the other hand are only from June or even July on the road.
Tip: In general, however, insects need shelters throughout the year: during the spring and summer months, eggs are laid, larvae hatch and develop, and many insects (such as wild bees) like to spend the summer nights in the sheltered environment of an insect hotel. During the cold season, however, the box is used as a wintering aid for both larvae and adult animals.

Why is the right location so important?


Only at a suitable location will you attract numerous insects - however, if the location does not fit, the insect hotel will remain empty and will be left unused. The choice of location is so important for these reasons:
  • Insects need a lot of heat, especially in their development time
  • The insect hotel should not be permanently wet and damp.
  • Such conditions prevent the hatching and development of offspring
  • Insects are preferably near their food sources.
  • In addition, they should be protected against predators and other hazards.
Tip: An insect hotel must always be firmly anchored and not dangle freely on a branch.

The right alignment

Optimally, set the insect hotel south - here the sun shines from morning to night, it is bright, warm, sheltered from the wind and also the rain is not inside the wooden box. Under such conditions, eggs and larvae can develop well, so that the insects can expect a lot of offspring.
Not suitable, however, is an orientation in the north-west direction. Here, on the so-called weather side, is rarely the sun, it is drafty and in wet weather is the rain into the house. Just as uncomfortable is an orientation to the north-east. Although most commercial insect hotels have a weather protection in the form of a roof construction and / or back wall, but this is not sufficient, especially as protection against permanent moisture.
Facts about alignment at a glance:
  • Orientation to the south is optimal
  • as much sun, warmth and protection from wind and rain as possible
  • do not hang in north-west or north-east directions
  • Weather side is always too dark and too humid
Tip: Stagnant water is the Niströhren can kill the eggs and larvae of many species. Therefore, put or hang the insect hotel at the top slightly tilted forward. In this way, penetrating moisture flows off quickly.

Easily accessible food sources

But not only the direction determines the optimal location of an insect hotel, the proximity to the food sources is relevant. So that bees, bumblebees and Co. do not have to fly far, you should position the box in close proximity to flowering forage plants. To attract additional animals, you can plant in your garden preferred flowering plants such as cranesbill, broom, prairie, lavender, thyme, zinnias, sun hat, lilac and other species.


The proximity to the vegetable and ornamental garden with its numerous shrubs, shrubs and vegetables also supplies those insects with food that feed on aphids, for example. Rose lovers therefore benefit in a very special way from an insect hotel: the beneficial insects keep the aphid plague in the roses small. In combination with interplanted lavender - on which in turn butterflies, bees and bumblebees are happy - nothing stands in the way of a successful colonization of the insect hotel.
Tip: Usually it is enough to place the house in the right place and wait a bit - in the warm season an insect hotel is quickly accepted.However, if you do not want to wait that long or prefer to settle on certain beneficial insects, you can buy lacewings and others in specialist shops. You can then put these directly at the insect hotel.

Install insect hotel as high as possible

Furthermore, the insect hotel from the ground as far away as possible to install. You should attach the box at least 50 centimeters high, but better about the height of your head. This not only prevents moisture from the soil from nesting in the wooden box and allowing the material to rot faster, the height also prevents small children and cats, dogs and other animals from curious browsing in the nesting box. In order to make them feel good, the insects should not be disturbed unnecessarily - also prevent so that dogs and children catch bee or wasp sting by angry hotel residents.
Tip: An insect hotel can be attached very well to the trunk of a tree, for example within an orchard. A meadow orchard, which is also maintained as a wild meadow with many flowering herbs, is ideal as a location for an insect hotel.

Protect insect hotel from birds

Of course, the protection against the main predators of the insects is not negligible, otherwise blackbirds, woodpeckers and various songbirds could confuse the insect hotel with a rich buffet. So that the hungry poultry does not approach the tasty insects, it is best to stretch a wire mesh a few centimeters away from the box. For example, close-meshed rabbit or rabbit wire is very well suited for this purpose. The meshes can be easily passed through the insects, but the bills of blackbirds & Co. then no longer reach the protective passageways of the house.
Tip: Experience has shown that a blue bird net prevents birds from plundering the insect hotel. Most bird species recognize the color from afar and avoid it from the outset.

In the far corner of the garden or rather next to the terrace?


Whether you attach the insect hotel right next to your terrace or rather in the back garden angle is entirely up to you. The insects themselves are not disturbed by the presence of humans, as long as they only find enough food in the immediate environment. However, placement near the house or terrace has the advantage that hungry birds can be disturbed by humans and therefore leave the insects alone. Since even wild bees and wasps are very peaceful and usually do not sting, you do not need to be afraid here either. Only if you or a family member has an allergy to bee and / or wasp stings, caution is advised - in this case, you should better exclude all eventualities and banish the insect hotel actually in the back garden corner.

No change of location in winter!

Once hung up or set up, you should always leave the insect hotel in its location - even if it is frosty in winter and a thick blanket of snow lies outside. Do not bring the box with the hibernating insects and their larvae into the house or any other warm place - this only completely upsets the biorhythm of the animals. If it is suddenly so warm, the animals swarm, believing that it was already spring, and die of a miserable starvation. In the middle of winter they will not find any fodder plants. Quite apart from that, many insect larvae need a cold spell for their development.

Is it possible to install an insect hotel on the balcony?

Also on the balcony you can, for example, attach a nesting aid for wild bees. In contrast to honeybees, wild bees do not make peoples but feed their broods alone. Moreover, they are extremely peaceful and avoid any confrontation. For balcony gardeners, the animals are very useful, pollinating many flowering plants.

Video Board: Insect hotels / bug hotels, how successful were they?.

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