Insect Week: 3 Ways To Help The Little Ones

Today marks the final day of National Insect Week, a week organised by the Royal Entomological Society to help raise awareness and interest in insects. The study of insects ties into so many different fields from ecology and conservation to food production (anyone heard of cricket flour?) and medicine. With over 24,000 species in the UK alone, there are plenty of bugs and beasties that need looking after so we thought we’d have a look at 3 things we could do to help with conservation efforts.

Keep Your Garden Messy

A lot of you will have heard of ‘No-Mow May’, a campaign designed to encourage gardeners to leave their lawns longer until at least June, to allow hibernating insects time to emerge in the summer and to leave more food available for pollinators. Bonus – a longer lawn can also help lock away carbon below the ground and helps with pollution. But even after May is over, if you are able to leave some spots in your garden in a slightly more ‘feral’ condition, whether that’s a pile of terracotta pots left in the corner or some planks of wood left to mulch away in a dark corner – these will provide fantastic habitats for your backyard insects to live in.

Make a Bug Box

Perhaps you don’t have much of a garden to speak of or for whatever, reason, your garden needs to be kept clean and tidy. Then why not consider making a bug box to create a home for insects. This could range from simply stuffing a section of pallet with twigs and pine cones to creating a luxurious 5-star bug hotel! There are plenty of instructions online for different versions you can create and the finished result will prove to be a welcome addition to any outside space you might have. Many species (such as masonry bees) find it harder to find places to live in our built up urban areas but you can do your bit by giving them a home!

Be an Insect Friendly Gardener

If you are a green fingered god or goddess who spends a lot of time in their garden, start to consider insects when you’re planning your growing for the year ahead. Try and avoid pesticides if possible and maybe consider planting some pollinator-friendly plants (a simple search online will give you a whole host of ideas!) Composting your waste also provides a fantastic home for many bugs and beasties (as well as providing you with nutrient rich compost for the next growing season).

Author: Hannah Durdin, Forest School Leader & Content Officer

Date: Sunday 30th June 2024

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