Gardens can support a huge range of creatures. Some are large and colourful, others are much smaller and less glamorous, and often prefer to remain hidden. These ‘mini-beasts’ are not only fascinating, but also have a very important role to play in gardens and every other habitat too. Many are herbivores or carnivores, but some are cleaners and recyclers, others are pollinators, or help to disperse seeds. This is a place to explore with child-like curiosity- gently lift a piece of decaying wood or a stone and see what hidden creatures you can spot!
The original home of many creepy-crawlies is woodland, where they have evolved to take advantage of the abundance of dead wood, from fallen branches and wind-blown trees to ‘standing deadwood’ (trees that die and rot without falling over). Man-made log-piles mimic this natural dead wood and provide food and habitat for a whole host of creatures. Fungi and bacteria rot the wood, and these (together with the wood in the logs) provide food for a wide variety of creatures, especially beetles. A log pile also provides shelter: birds, mice, voles, frogs, toads and newts may all make a home there.