Building an invertebrate habitat

by Value hunter  

Building an invertebrate habitat
Building an invertebrate habitat
Building an invertebrate habitat
Building an invertebrate habitat
Building an invertebrate habitat
Building an invertebrate habitat

Attracting wildlife to your garden can have huge benefits and save you money!

Slugs: Frogs and hedgehogs eat them and their eggs (laid under your soil) - a small pond close by to your habitat can sustain them and help in the constant battle against the slugs that eat your veg and plants.
Butterflies: Allowing things to overgrow a bit, seems to attract more wildlife into the garden.
Midgies: From the little pond, midgies swim around then leave the pond and fly around the garden.
Why would I want to provide a haven for these insects? There's method in the madness, we have a family of bats that live over the back, as the midgies rise as soon as dusk falls, the bats swoop down and eat them! (Don't even bother trying to photograph them, I have been trying to catch them on camera for years, not a single success story to show for it yet hehe)

The link I have included in this post (at the top) has laid out instructions for building your own.
Find a quiet corner of your garden, put down a few paving stones or flags, to provide a solid base for your habitat, turn the bottom pallet upside down and place the next pallet the right way round on top of it, this leaves a big enough space for hedgehogs to get in.

I use my habitat to get rid of grass cuttings and branches I chop off from the neighbours over hanging bushes, this provides great nesting material for the local birds, of which we have many here in Lancashire.
Kestrels, hawks, starlings, etc are common here. We have also seen blackbirds returning to feed, after years of not having them around because of building work dug up most of the natural landscape to the rear of our garden. If you provide materials and foods for them they will come back to any area.
We have even had a rare pair of yellow wagtails feeding.

Once your habitat is in place, don't expect instant results!
It takes a bit of time for animals to find it. In our very small pond that I built alongside the habitat (It is a simple large tub half buried in the ground with pebbles placed in the bottom and around the edge of it) we had to bring in frogspawn, the tadpoles seemed to thrive on it, still swimming around as late as November!
If frogs return to it, only time will tell, come next spring we shall find out!

So far we have had just one grey squirrel burying food around it, but it seems to like it as it provides cover for it from predators like the local cats.
Have fun with your habitat and just leave it be, let it develop its own wildlife as it surely will. Local wildlife we all saw as kids is taken for granted, but the block paving and tarmac revolution has not wiped wildlife out, but forced it to move on to other areas, building a simple habitat, we have found, gives the local wildlife a place to come back to and provides a means of existing alongside building mad Britain.

Instructions for building a wildlife habitat


Comment from: Abe [Visitor]
I live in Australia, so we have a different set of wildlife to you guys. Where I live we have a ridiculous invasion of cane toads. They eat all kinds of bugs that are beneficial to the garden and have poison sacks on their backs that prevent or kill things that try to eat them. As well as that, they breed rapidly in any environment. I'm planning on building a habitat with them in mind. Do you have any pests that you need to ward off from your habitat? (Other than cats, but a few thorns could discourage them)
30/04/10 @ 00:19
Comment from: [Member]
Value hunter
Not really Abe. Never really thought about it that way. The obvious one for us here is slugs, wet climate here in north west england, we get showers and out they all come. at the moment they are munching on my strawberry plants, which are a month away from growing fruit. One i would watch for, especially when you know what you are planting out, etc, i plant veg out in the back garden, limited success so far, we also have a "butterfly bush" which is ready to plant out, butterflies and growing veg dont go well together, so itll have to go out the front, where the flowers are. the habitat has a small square pond next to it, despite two years of frog spawn and allowing grasses to grow in it, and provide stones for getting in and out, they just will not take. The tadpoles vanish but no frogs return the following year. of course with your climate over there, you wont be troubled by slugs, is there nothing you can put down thats eco friendly for the toads?
30/04/10 @ 01:39
Comment from: Abe [Visitor]
Anything that will kill the toads will also kill the native frogs, which I couldn't bare the thought of doing. The only thing I can think of is that the toads can't jump high or stick to walls well, so I might make my shelter up a few bricks high with glass or plastic sheeting, which the frogs will stick to but the toads wont. We also live close to the mangroves, so there is an abundance of mozzies and sandflies for the frogs to eat, and hopefully they will leave my native stingless bees alone. I might also train a thorny vine along the base of the outside, to further ward off toads, the frogs should be small enough to navigate it, or jump over it.
03/05/10 @ 07:39

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