SIX OF THE BEST Garden wildlife habitats
The decline of many of our best-loved wild species in rural and domestic settings is, in part, due to habitat loss. You can help to redress the balance by providing homes for creatures that visit your garden.
1. Ladybird tower
The central chamber of this ladybird tower is packed with straw for extra insulation when the temperature drops. It provides sanctuary for ladybirds and several other beneficial insects. Site out of the wind, in a sunny location. £15, shop.rhs.org.uk
2. Falkenstein bat box
With a shortage of natural roosting spaces for bats, there has never been a better time to install a bat box. Place the structure on the wall of the house, as close to the eaves as possible and away from predators, like cats. £14.99 from C J Wildlife, birdfood.co.uk
3. Sparrow terrace nest box
As sociable birds that nest in small colonies, the sparrow population is in serious decline in cities and towns where nesting spaces are hard to find. Help them with this carefully designed nest box for multiple occupancy.
4.Timeless Range hedgehog house
If you know hedgehogs frequent your local area, a hedgehog house will provide a most welcome bolthole for these timid little creatures. Place the house in a sheltered, quiet area of the garden, ideally nestled in the undergrowth. £50, shop.nationaltrust.org.uk
5. Nooks & Crannies insect hotel
This insect hotel is made from natural materials across several floors and is designed to appeal to a wide variety of winged insects. Nestle it amid foliage, where the sun reaches it for part of the day. £34.95, arkwildlife.co.uk
6. Ceramic bumblebee nester
This frost-proof nester is designed to attract a multitude of different creatures. Bumblebees are often attracted to old mice nests, so if rodents occupy the dome in the first year, bumblebees may be attracted to it the following year. £19.99, greengardener.co.uk