birding-aus Owls - sugarcane etc

To: Nigel Sterpin <>
Subject: birding-aus Owls - sugarcane etc
From: Lloyd Nielsen <>
Date: Fri, 19 Mar 1999 23:17:55 -0800


Some time ago you posted a query on birding-aus in relation to utilising
owls instead of pesticides in sugar-cane in N. Qld to control pests.  I
meant to post a reply but did not get around to it at the time.

John Young  has been a driving force in getting farmers around Ingham to
get owls back into their fields to control the main pest - rats (2
native species).  John saw the owl population (mostly Barn, Masked and
Grass) drop to drastic levels and began his campaign.  He also played a
major part in having 'Kleerat' withdrawn from the market - the pesticide
responsible for the decline.

Now, quite a number of farmers have erected 'owl boxes' and hunting
perches throughout their fields and apparently this coupled with better
farming practices is proving quite a successful substitute for
pesticides.  From memory, after 12 months - of something like 28 boxes
erected, 27 were occupied, mostly with Barn but apparently at least one
with Masked, and some were rearing broods.  John had also convinced some
farmers to leave a couple of acres of grass in a corner or two of their
property for Grass Owls. ABC did something on it somne time ago - was
probably 'Landline' I think but I may be wrong.

It seems as though the good news is spreading.  Recent word is that some
Mossman cane growers are now considering putting in owl boxes.

Best wishes,

Lloyd Nielsen

Mt Molloy   NQ  4871

To unsubscribe from this list, please send a message to

Include "unsubscribe birding-aus" in the message body (without the quotes)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>
  • birding-aus Owls - sugarcane etc, Lloyd Nielsen <=

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the archive e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU