Tuesday, 10 April 2012

water

One of the best ways of attracting wildlife to the garden is by providing water. And if your garden is too small for a pond, you can still help the thirsty.

Any shallow container will do.

Here we have used part of a broken terracotta plant pot. We all know that birds use the water for drinking and for bathing. But many other creatures depend on the water we provide. The footprint (right) is from a grey squirrel that we had disturbed as it drank.

A greenhouse tray placed in the sun and filled with pebbles and then topped up with water has proved irresistible to honeybees that constantly buzzed too and fro from the water filled tray and their hives.

Honeybees need water for their own survival, but they also need it to dilute stored honey before feeding it to their larvae. The intense activity today suggests thriving colonies.

Honeybees also spread water on the surface of the honeycomb to cool the nest by evaporation on hot days.

An absorbent carpet had become puddled with dew and rainwater and was equally attractive to the bees. Slightly less attractive - but effective!

These containers do need regular attention and require topping up during periods of dry weather.

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