BirdLife Cyprus announced yesterday the installation of Barn Owl nest boxes in the village of Kampia in the framework of its “Barn Owl Project” that introduces the use of these stunning birds of prey as pest control agents in farming as an alternative to rodenticides.
The Barn Owl Tyto alba is a nocturnal bird of prey who with its excellent night vision, fantastic hearing and silent flight hunts and eats up to 1000 rodents per year.
Pictured: Mr. Kypros from Kampia village stopped placing rodent poison around his farm and reached out to BirdLife Cyprus to install nest boxes and attract Barn Owls in the area.
According to BirdLife, rodenticides are used very extensively in Cyprus, distributed at a subsidized price to local communities who then distribute them to farmers to control rodents that damage trees and crops.
In Cyprus, thanks to the project, nest boxes for Barn Owls and for Kestrels are being installed in specific areas in collaboration with farmers. Relevant workshops also take place to provide information to farmers as well as relevant authorities.
Another important element of the project is to carry out some research work to study other aspects of the Barn Owl’s biology and their impact on rodents.
The aim of the project is to find a long term solution, to reduce the use of poisons while at the same time reduce damage from rodents in agriculture.
Pictured: Mr. Kypros is placing woodshavings on the base of the nest, something that Barn Owls particularly like.
Learn more on the project here: birdlifecyprus.org/barn-owl-project