DIY Bug Hotel

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

A shelter for the little bugs my kids are looking out for.

Earth day happened nearly two weeks ago but we have made sure to continue to give back to our Earth in some really awesome ways in our home. One of which was creating a bug hotel for the bugs in our backyard. The idea behind building a structure like this was to encourage biodiversity in areas of our backyard that have growing plants, flowers, etc. We wanted to aid in increasing ecosystem productivity and in small, this is what we came up with. Anyone (even my artistically challenged self) can participate and make this happen! I absolutely loved making this with my kids and I know they enjoyed decorating and a finding a place for this bug home in our backyard. 

Here's what you need:

  • A round cylinder like container with a lid (we used an oatmeal container, but you can use whatever cylinder shape you have on hand)
  • Nylon netting material (I got mine from Walmart. It was $0.49 for a yard and a half. I have tons of leftover material)
  • Box cutter for cutting out windows and doors for the bug hotel
  • hot glue gun for a more secure hold of any artistic decor like beads, popsicle stick grass, etc. 
  • acrylic paint to paint the outside
  • cotton balls for clouds (optional)

The first thing we did was strip the oatmeal box of its original packaging. Once we got all of that off, we had a brown cardboard like cylinder to work with.

Then I used the box cutter to cut out a window and Justin cut out the door. 

Once we had our spaces cut out we let the kids go to town on decorating. They painted, added butterfly stickers, and clouds. This is when I also used the hot glue gun to put popsicle stick grass all around the hotel. 

The last step was adding the mesh into the window and top of of the container. It was a little tricky because you have to glue from the inside out so the mesh holds correctly. This is what those areas looked like:

I'm impressed with how well they've held up in the rain because I thought for sure I did a botched job with the hot glue gun. We let our project fully dry for a couple of days and then it was ready for the outdoors. I am super impressed with how well this turned out and the kids absolutely love having this addition in the backyard. They are SO brave and peek in to see if any bug friends have taken residence here. They've also added some grass, small rocks, and outdoor stuff to make this structure super bug friendly. 

I hope you guys give this project a go! It's definitely a project I can see our family participating in again. 

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