Australian Barn Owls and their use in Natural, Cost-effective Rodent Control
The very same owl that is being used to a great extent now in vineyards, orchards, and farms in the United States, Israel, Malaysia, and Southeast Asia is not only common in Australia, but is now being utilized by Australian vineyards and other agriculture such as macadamia nut orchards and the trend is growing by leaps and bounds. Or pounces. The barn owl, Tyto alba, one of the most widespread birds in the world, is uniquely suited for sophisticated nest box programs due to the fact that it will essentially form dense colonies where there are ample nesting sites and prey, raises large numbers of young, often double clutches, will live in close proximity to noisy children, pets, workers, and machinery, and remains faithful to its nesting sites year after year. Numerous studies have shown that the barn owl consumes huge numbers of rodents and does so at a cost far less expensive than trapping, poisons, and other invasive methods.
Newly Published Three-Year Study Shows Effectiveness of Barn Owls in Lowering Rodent Numbers Significantly
Recently published in the proceedings of the Vertebrate Pest Conference in Newport Beach, California, this summation of a three year study of a dense population of barn owls concluded that barn owls lowered rodent numbers significantly on a 40 hectare vineyard over the course of the study. An amazing number of barn owls were attracted– in 2012, 18 breeding pairs raised 66 young successfully, creating a population of 102 barn owls living on that rather small plot of land. This showed what could be done to attract a very dense population. It was conservatively estimated that the owls consumed over 30,000 rodents over a three year period. Statistical analysis showed that rodent activity was lowered significantly. You can access the entire paper here.
Benefits of Using Barn Owls in Australia
Australian agriculture suffers large losses due to crop loss and equipment damage just as farmers around the world experience. Rodents are the main culprit, and Australia has its fair share of rodent pests, including Norwegian and black rats, voles (meadow mice), and house mice which periodically explode in numbers causing untold damage to crops. Barn owls exert an unrelenting pressure on rodents, breeding at the same time that rodent populations breed, and significantly lowering damage caused by rodent pests. Even more important, once established, a barn owl colony is self-sustaining with almost no maintenance.
How to Best Utilize Barn Owls for Rodent Control
Barn owl boxes can be erected on poles eight feet off the ground, can be as little as 50 feet apart, and should be installed at a density of one nest box for every 4 to 8 hectares. Occupancy often occurs quickly, and rates of occupancy can be anywhere from 50 to 100 percent.
The Barn Owl Box Company Comes to Australia
After excellent sales over the past eight years in the United States, we are now about to offer our molded plastic Barn Owl Box in Australia with a warehouse in Melbourne. The vineyards and orchards have been inquiring when we would make them available and so we will be shipping them in quantity to the land down under. The price will be an equivalent to what we sell them for here: $249 Australian dollars per unit, with quantity discounts.
Australian Discounts for Orders Placed Ahead of Time
We also are offering to anyone who wants to place an order from our first shipment a 20% discount that takes the price down to $200. No need for a transaction, just let us know you want to order and when our first container arrives, we will confirm your order and ship your nest box out at the discount price. Simply email us at email@example.com letting us know how many units. You may cancel at any time.