A Little Help From Up Above: Israel is Replacing Pesticides with Owls and Falcons

owl photo

Photo: Wikipedia, CC
Next Step: Bat Houses?
Farmers in Israel are doing some eco-judo, turning a problem into a solution. BirdLife International reported that many birds of prey in the region were dying because they were eating rodents that had been poisoned by pesticides. But now, there is a will to reduce the use of these poisons and instead us the birds of prey (owls, kestrels) as natural pest controllers. Good for the birds, good for the farmers. Probably not so good for the rodents, but you can't please everybody... Read on for more details.
kestrel photo

Photo: Wikipedia, Public domain
BBC News writes:

Many farmers are installing nest boxes to encourage the birds, which hunt the crop-damaging rodents.

In Israel, where there is a drive to reduce the use of toxic chemical pesticides, this has been turned into a government-funded national programme.

Jordanian and Palestinian scientists and conservation charities have joined the scheme.

And since kestrels hunt during the day and owls hunt at night, there is a continuous 'surveillance' of the fields. Much better than spraying poison around...

Via BBC News
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