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Last year I bought an insect hotel at the local supermarket (see in the photo below on the right hand side). It was a cheap and simple one, but soon a lot of all different kind of bees came and occupied almost all places, laying eggs and covering the holes with clay.

Because it was so popular among the insects in our garden, I had the idea of making another one myself (see left hand side). I took a piece of wood that had been drying outside for 1-2 years, drilled a lot of holes of different diameters, each a few centimeters deep, and hung it next to the first one.

To my astonishment, not a single bee made use of this new insect hotel. The same this year: in the first sunny days of early spring a lot of bees are flying in and out the insect hotel from the supermarket, but only sometimes a bee would approach the one that I made, only to fly away after short inspection.

What is wrong with my insect hotel?

Insect hotels

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  • maybe there's something about the particular tree the wood comes from that insects don't like – Bamboo Mar 22 '19 at 17:59
  • How deep is the purchased insect hotel? I've read that you should make the holes 6' deep so the bees are protected from any birds that will try to eat them. – tk421 Mar 22 '19 at 18:21
  • A few centimeters don't sound deep enough, try making them just a little bit deeper than those in the store bought insect hotel. – black thumb Mar 22 '19 at 18:32
  • Good idea! I checked this morning and the depth varies from approx. 5 to 10 cm, which is about the same as in the other one, so this does not seem to be the reason… – elzell Mar 23 '19 at 9:24
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Check the temperature where the hotel is located. Ensure that in cold times of the year, there is warmth from the sun.

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