Don’t disturb insect nests and hibernation spots

Avoid disturbing or destroying nesting or hibernating insects, in places like grass margins, bare soil, hedgerows, trees, dead wood or walls.

As well as making sure there are adequate food resources throughout the year for insect pollinators, it is also important to make sure they can nest in safety so that they and the next generation can survive overwinter, to start again in the following spring.

Most wild bees are not aggressive if they or their nests are left undisturbed. Some bumble bees nest underground in small mammal holes, under sheds and in heaps of compost or leaves which tend to be dry and dark. Others make nests above ground in thick grass or in trees.

The many different species of solitary bees have particular nesting requirements. A few species will make their nests in your lawn and many others favour bare patches of compacted soil, especially if sloping and with a southern aspect, where they can dig vertical nest tunnels.

In addition, some solitary bees nest above ground and you can provide them with hollow reeds, canes or twigs, or wooden blocks with holes of different sizes drilled into them (2mm to 10mm), or buy commercially available bee hotels, and hang them somewhere warm, sunny and sheltered about 1-2 m above the ground. Advice on making nests for bees is available from organisations like Buglife and the Bumblebee Conservation Trust.  

Note: Government experts and a wide range of interested parties have helped to inform the development of these actions and the supporting advice. It is intended as good practice advice and should not be regarded as official guidance. The Bees’ Needs is hosted by The Wildlife Trusts on behalf of Defra in support of the emerging National Pollinator Strategy. The Wildlife Trusts do not own or endorse any content other than as a contributing stakeholder to the National Pollinator Strategy along with many other organisations and individuals.

Contact us at:


Consultation – DEFRA – Invasive species

Wildlife Team Horizon House Deanery Road Bristol
BS1 5AHEmailDear ConsulteeDEFRA website

Consultation on tackling Invasive Non-native Species: a new enforcement regimeI am writing to invite views on a regime to enforce the EU Invasive Alien Species Regulation in England and Wales. The EU Invasive Alien Species Regulation came into force in 2015. It currently applies restrictions on 49 invasive non-native species of most concern in Europe including a ban on keeping and sale. This consultation sets out proposals for enforcing those restrictions through the use of civil and criminal penalties. It will be of relevance for businesses that import or trade in non-native species and individuals that keep them, as well as those working in zoos and aquaria and NGOs with an interest in protecting the environment from these species.

The following documents may be found on Defra’s website
Consultation – 9 January 2018

 Consultation document.
We welcome your views and comments on the proposals. If you wish to obtain a

paper copy of this consultation, please contact email



To submit your consultation response please complete the consultation questionnaire provided through Citizen Space (Citizen Space is an on-line consultation tool) or alternatively please email or post your response at the address above.

  1. Responses should be received by 3 April 2018.
  2. This is a twelve week consultation.

Consultation Criteria

This consultation is in line with the Consultation Principles. This can be found at Cabinet Office resources

Confidentiality and data protectionA summary of responses to this consultation will be published on the Government website at: DEFRA. The summary will include a list of organisations that responded but not personal names, addresses or other contact details.

Information provided in response to this consultation, including personal information, may be made available to the public on request, in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA) and the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIRs). Defra may also publish the responses to the FOIA/EIR requests on DEFRA.

If you want information, including personal information such as your name, that you provide to be treated as confidential, please explain clearly in writing when you provide your response to the consultation why you need to keep these details confidential. If we receive a request for the information under the FOIA or the EIRs we will take full account of your explanation, but we cannot guarantee that confidentiality can be maintained in all circumstances. However, Defra will not permit any unwarranted breach of confidentiality nor will we act in contravention of our obligations under the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA). An automatic confidentiality disclaimer generated by your IT system will not, of itself, be regarded as a confidentiality request.

Defra will share the information you provide in response to the consultation, including any personal data, with a third party of contracted external analysts for the purposes of response analysis and provision of a report.

Defra is the data controller in respect of any personal data that you provide, and Defra’s Personal Information Charter, which gives details of your rights in respect of the handling of your personal data, can be found at: PERSONAL INFORMATION CHARTER

This consultation is being conducted in line with the “Consultation Principles” as set out in the Better Regulation Executive guidance which can be found at: CONSULTATION GUIDANCE

If you have any comments or complaints about the consultation process, please address them to:

  • Consultation Co-ordinator 8A
    8th Floor, Nobel House 17 Smith Square, London, SW1P 3JR.


Thank you for your help in this matter. If you have any queries, please contact us as above.

Yours faithfully
Invasive Alien Species team
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs