Most garden wildlife is busy in April. Many bumblebees and birds will be establishing nests and plenty of other species, such as moths, leaf miners and other insects, are already breeding. Hedgehogs, which typically emerge from hibernation in March, will be fattening up to be in good condition for breeding in May. Most frogs and toads will have left ponds after breeding, in search of damp shelter such as beneath a log or brick pile.
More on wildlife gardening:
Browse our list of wildlife gardening jobs for April, below.
Leave caterpillars for birds
Avoid removing caterpillars from plants if you can – these are an essential food source for nesting birds such as blue tits and great tits, which feed caterpillars to their young. Also, don’t forget to keep bird feeders topped up this month.
Empty your compost bin
Empty your compost bin now, as any wildlife that may have been hibernating should have emerged, now. However, check the bin carefully before emptying and avoid plunging your fork into the heap in case any frogs or hedgehogs are sheltering there.
Sow cornfield annuals
Fill gaps in borders by scattering seeds of cornfield annuals such as field poppy, corn cockle and cornflower. These will flower quickly for an instant hit of colour, while increasing the availability of pollen and nectar for pollinators.
Continue to leave out water and meat-based dog or cat food (ideally chicken flavour) for hedgehogs. Kitten biscuits are also perfect for hedgehogs. This will help them fatten up to be in peak condition for breeding next month.
Make a bee hotel
Make a bee hotel for solitary bees such as mason bees. Solitary bees lay individual eggs in cells made in wood cavities and old, hollow plant stems.