Attracting Animals to Your Garden: Choosing the Right Nest Box for Hedgehogs, Frogs and Dormouse
Putting an animal nest box, such as a hedgehog house, or frog and toad habitat in your garden can be a great way to attract species that are natures pest controllers. Both eat the gardener’s enemy – slugs. Nest boxes are also obtainable for scarce mammals such as Red Squirrels and Dormouse, although these typically require wooded areas.
There are many animal habitat designs to choose from and care should be taken to choose one that suits a species that you want to attract, or that is known to visit the garden.
Once you have decided on an animal box to suit the species you are aiming to attract, then the next decision is where to site the nest box. Hedgehogs would typically nest naturally under sheds and buildings or in piles of logs and leaves. Frogs live in and around ponds and water supplies and will rest in cool damp places. Both species satisfy on slugs and insects and placing the box near a food source will help them find food and help keep your garden free of pests.
Red Squirrel Boxes should be placed high up in trees. Dormouse boxes can be placed lower down (1.5 – 2m high), they need to be fixed to a tree with the entrance hole facing the trunk. Both squirrel and Dormouse boxes should be placed on a tree, within a group of trees and not an secluded one. These species are protected and once in place, the nest boxes should not be disturbed.
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