Introduction: Weta Hotel

Picture of Weta Hotel

A cozy habitat for weta.

Weta are our buddies in the garden. Ours are the size of my hand. Over in matiu Island they're bigger than my face.

Weta like to chew on wood. They are nocturnal and need somewhere dry and dark to sleep all day. Previously they used the weeds under the lemon tree, but I pull out those weeds. So this is my peace offering to these fierce insects.

Step 1: Split a Log

Picture of Split a Log

Choose untreated wood, as weta will be eating the wood slowly.
Split the log horizontally halfway and then vertically halfway, to separate a piece form the log. This will become the door flap for viewing the weta.

Step 2: Measure and Chisel Out Rooms

Picture of Measure and Chisel Out Rooms

Use a ruler and pencil to draw the rooms for the weta. Chisel out this space. Remember the weta will renovate the room to their own requirements, don't bother making it perfect. Any uneven surface will make a nice snack for a weta.

We started with a chisel, then increased depth with a dremel. And smoothed with a drill.

Step 3: Drill Doorways

Picture of Drill Doorways

Drill a doorway. Weta prefer horizontal path ways. At least 10mm. No bigger then 18mm, or you'll get mice instead of weta.

Step 4: Window

Picture of Window

Add a see through window.

This is to stop weta jumping in your face when you open the door.

We used clear acrylic, held in place with screws.

Step 5: Light Stop

Use draft stop tape to surround the windows and make the rooms dark for the weta. We kept this in place under the edge of the acrylic.

Step 6: Latch

Picture of Latch

Use a garden gate or tool box Latch to hold the door shut tightly, allowing me light into the rooms. You could also use twine to pull it closed.

I used an old suitcase strap pulled tight.

Comments

Cambenora (author)2015-05-25

I've never heard of these guys before. I used to see something similar in SW Australia, but they were not as big. I just thought they were a type of grasshopper.

Thanks for posting this; it was quite educational.

*Update* apparently, they are related to crickets. Saw plenty of them on arriving in Oz.

sway (author)2015-05-14

Why ....oh why!?!?

If I had gone my whole life without knowing about these things that would have been fine by me.

Seriously though, what's this for? Like an ant farm?

livichris (author)2015-05-10

holy crap, just looked up weta on Google images, they're massive!

Lemonbubble (author)2015-05-10

Great idea! I would love to see pictures if you actually get weta in there!

About This Instructable

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Bio: open source hacker. engineer at Weta. beer and coffee and cupcakes. and homegrown feijoas
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