How to Attract Bats for Insect Control and Pollination
Tips for Attracting Bats
Offer a source of water – Even desert species periodically need H20. Having a pond or water feature on your property then makes it very enticing for bats. If you don’t have a natural water source nearby, install a birdbath or fountain to attract more bats to your backyard.
Plant a Garden – Fragrant flowers, herbs, and night-blooming plants attract nocturnal insects, which, in turn, lure bats. The more insects, the better. Try planting dahlia, French marigold, nicotiana, evening primrose, thyme, raspberry, or honeysuckle. Pale-colored blooms also have a good chance of bringing in bugs.
Bats for Insect Control – Bats that eat insects are called “insectivorous.” They feast on insects each night, adding up to more than $3.7 billion worth of pest control each year in the U.S. When bats are around to eat insects, there are fewer insect pests causing damage to crops, and farmers don’t have to invest as much in pesticides. Imagine a teenage boy eating 200 quarter-pound burgers — that’s how much a bat eats in insects in one night!
How to Attract Butterflies and Hummingbirds
Tips for Attracting Butterflies and Hummingbirds
Choose a Sunny Site – Butterflies are the ultimate sun worshipers. If you’ve spent any time observing butterflies at all, you know they spend some of their time basking in the sunshine. Like all insects, butterflies are ectotherms, meaning they can’t regulate their body temperatures internally. Instead, they rely on the sun’s energy to warm their bodies so they can function.
Protect from the Wind – If it takes a lot of energy for the butterflies to battle the wind currents in your backyard habitat, the site won’t be as beneficial to them for gathering nectar. Try to place your nectar and host plants where the house, a fence, or a line of trees will buffer the wind. If needed, provide a windbreak by planting taller shrubs or trees to block the prevailing winds from your butterfly garden.
Plant a Diversity of Flowers – Butterflies are diverse creatures, and they require diverse sources of food. Large butterflies, like swallowtails and monarchs, prefer large, flat flowers that give them a good-sized landing area. Smaller butterflies, such as hairstreaks, coppers, and metalmarks, have shorter proboscises. They won’t be able to drink from the deep nectaries of large flowers. When choosing flowers for your butterfly garden, try to pick a variety of flower shapes, colors, and sizes to meet the needs of different butterflies. Plants with clusters of smaller flowers (milkweeds, for example) will attract butterflies of all sizes.
Plant Host Plants for Caterpillars – To create a true butterfly habitat, your garden will include a number of different host plants for caterpillars. Remember, you need to feed the larvae, too, not just the adult butterflies. And female butterflies will be cruising your garden, looking for places to lay their eggs. Some species are specialists, requiring host plants from a particular genus or family. Other butterflies aren’t as picky and will deposit eggs on a range of plants.
No Bird Feeders Near Butterfly Habitats – Remember, birds prey on insects! If you place a birdbath right in the middle of your butterfly garden, you’re providing one-stop shopping for hungry birds. Consider placing any bird feeders or birdbaths in a separate area of your yard, just so it isn’t quite so easy for birds to find the smorgasbord of caterpillars in your garden.
Pollinators – Butterflies and Hummingbirds can pollinate flowers that can’t be reached by other birds. They don’t have the disadvantage of a small beak or large body when it comes to spreading pollen. This makes it easier to grow long-tubed flowers that need pollination. They eat frequently, dining not only on nectar but also insects and pollen.
How to Attract Owls for Pests and Rodent Control
Tips for Attracting Owls
Rodent Control – Primarily, owls provides natural pest control for the environment. They eat small rodents and vermin, which are pests that are usually bothersome to homes. Owls are better for the environment and more effective than rodenticides.
Tips for Attracting Owls
Install nesting boxes to provide owls with a secure location to set up home. Most owls seek hollow cavities in trees to nest, but some, like the screech owl, are attracted to manufactured boxes. Place boxes in trees 10-12 feet from the ground on property perimeter where leavings will not be a problem.
Don’t prune large branches from trees. Horizontal perches give owls a prime location on which to perch.
Put outdoor flood lights on timers. A well-lit yard does not appeal to these night-stalkers. Once you’ve gone to bed, turn out the lights so these pest controllers can get to work.
Provide bird baths. Like other birds, owls may be attracted by a large bird bath from which to drink and bathe.
Mow the lawn less often to give owls a more appealing hunting ground. Mice and other small rodents are likelier to traffic spans of grass left a little longer.
More Articles to Review:
- How to Build Bird Houses that Attract Hummingbirds
- How to Build an Owl House to Attract Barn and Screech Owls
- How to Build a Bat House to Attract Bats in Order to Control Insects
- How to Build Feeders, Flowers and Houses that Will Attract Butterflies
- How to Install an In-Window Bird Feeder for Living Room Bird Watching
- How to Train Squirrels to Leave Your Bird Feed Alone
# # #