Build your own insect hotel
Some people might say that you don't get the insects you want moving into an insect hotel. But for me it's import to provide shelter to all types of insects. There are no good or bad ones in my opinion. I want to do something good for all animals and welcome all visitors! Here you can find instructions on how to build an insect hotel yourself.
Before you start work, you should ask yourself the following question: How big should the insect hotel be? Large or small?
I have decided to build a somewhat larger insect hotel with a height of 2 metres and a width of 1.10 metre. For the material, you can use "waste" from other projects as long as they are the right size. I looked in my wood store for 10:10 cm square timber cut-offs.
Cutting the wood is easy with a hand-held circular saw. You just have to cut the square timber from top to bottom.
Once everything is cut, we can get on with constructing the insect hotel! Each piece of wood is predrilled with a 3 mm drill bit, and the distance from the edge should be 3:3 cm at the top and 3:7 cm at the bottom. The reason for this is so that the wood does not crack.
I wanted the insect hotel to have four "compartments" or "cabins" that could be filled with different materials. Therefore, I attached the pieces of wood at distances of 50 cm from top to bottom. A vertical piece of wood was added in the centre of each layer. So that the insect hotel will be very stable, each piece is screwed twice. I used 160 mm screws for this.
Now the frame has been securely constructed, we come to the base of the insect hotel! For this I used a scaffolding board, which I sawed through the middle. I needed a length of at least 50 cm to ensure everything stood stable.
Constructing the rear side. For security, I used chicken wire for this. This is placed flat on the rear side and fixed with roofing nails. Afterwards, the wire is cut to size with pliers or a good pair of pruning shears. Now nothing can fall out of the back!
When you've decided on the perfect location for the insect hotel, the compartments can be filled with materials. The weight of the insect hotel should not be overlooked. I.e. later it might be difficult or even impossible to move it by hand.
Now we come to filling the compartments! I have opted for various different materials.
- Top left: Square timber with various holes. For this I sawed 12 individual square timbers to 10 cm and made holes in them of between 3 and 9 mm. This area should provide shelter for wild bees, among others.
- Top right: Nice and simple – filled with compacted leaves. This compartment has also had wire added from the front so that it can be filled carefully and we don't lose any material.
- Bottom left: Thanks to my professional experience as a builder, I got the idea to put old clinker brick in the compartment, e.g. as shelter for woodlice.
- Bottom right: Here I put beech wood in the compartment and filled the whole thing with beech chippings, the front side of this is also secured with wire.
Now the insect hotel is finished and ready for visitors!