While there are many means for attracting wildlife into your garden, one of the ways not to achieve this seems to be through the purchase of shop bought “homes” for creatures like birds, bees, hedgehogs, butterflies, lacewings, and toads.
A recent study revealed that after a year of testing, such creature habitats were ineffective and unnecessary. Only one ladybird seemed to be attracted to a Ladybird “Hotel” after testing in approximately 10 gardens in the Sheffield.
The complaint, beyond the fact that the habitats didn’t work, was the expense of these store bought houses. Many of them, especially the ones for hedgehogs, were quite costly. Consumers stand to be disappointed in the results and are really given no value for their money other than to have pretty garden ornaments.
Some of the houses even included suggestions, like trapping a queen bee in the bee house, that one should interfere in nature to force inhabitants into the dwellings. That would suggest that the manufacturers are something other than nature lovers.
The truth of the matter is that wildlife can be attracted to a person’s garden through easier, less expensive, and more natural methods than forcing them into a generic bees nest.
If you leave your compost pile exposed it will attract insects, birds, and hedgehogs. Log piles give hedgehogs and birds a place to hide and bordering your garden with hedges instead of fencing will attract all sorts of nesting wildlife. Plant weeds and nettles off in a corner and grow flowers and plants that yield berries for wildlife food. All of this will work far better than investing in a Hedgehog Hotel.