Personally I wouldn't bother even recommending, never mind using, a
plastic owl. There are dozens of sh*t stained pontoons in the Brisbane
river where I kayak and the most stained have a plastic owl standing
guard! I think the Silver Gulls see it as a protector rather than a
threat - they definitely seem to prefer the pontoons with one. And, no,
I'm not imagining things!
There was one boat that had a 'mewling' sound coming from it that had me
trying to see what bird was lying injured or what young bird was
stranded as I circled it on the water. I realised, after a while, that
it was the same sound over and over again and heard it again on
subsequent mornings. Not sure if it served a purpose, but there were no
birds showing any interest - fear or otherwise. Not sure, either, if it
was candid camera or a U tube thing - I felt pretty silly...
If your friend is going to try to scare birds with a raptor call I
imagine it'd have to be loud and at random intervals, I don't think they
fall for continuous repetition - much the way birds called in by
playback become unresponsive after a while as the 'music stays the
Good luck with that!
On Mon, 15 Mar 2010 06:23 +1100, "Bill Stent" <>
> You could always recommend a plastic Owl. They're quite popular here in
> Melbourne, although I can only assume people find them aesthetic, as I
> see no evidence of their actually working (there's one in our city car
> standing guard over a small colony or feral pigeons). I'm not even sure
> what species it's supposed to be - a horned owl of some sort.
> I think the basic idea is that the birds recognise the representation as
> owl and keep their distance. Of course the same reasoning would suggest
> that they recognise statues as humans and stay away. This probably comes
> under the heading of "never let the facts get in the way of a good
> From: "Peter Shute" <>
> Sent: Sunday, March 14, 2010 10:34 PM
> To: <>; <>
> Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Raptor CD
> > CD number 2 in the BOCA set includes the eagles, hawks, etc. Owls are on
> > number 4. They can be purchased separately. I don't know what effect
> > playing them might have on non target birds, that live in the area.
> > Pest control companies sell devices that regularly play various raptor
> > calls. I assume they're intended to scare away pigeons and starlings, etc.
> > I don't know how well they work - there are still plenty of them in places
> > they aren't wanted.
> > Peter Shute
> > --------------------------
> > Sent using BlackBerry