Opinion Former Article

BASC: Barn owl habitats boosted by North Wales shots

The number of barn owls nesting in North Wales should increase in the next few years thanks to a new project by conservation groups.

The initiative, which aims to find new sites for barn owl boxes on land used for shooting, has been set up by the North East Wales Raptor Study Group (NEWRSG) in conjunction with Local Biodiversity Action Plans (LBAP) and supported by the British Association for Shooting and Conservation's Green Shoots North Wales program.

Green Shoots project officer, Alex Hatton, said "Often the habitat on land used for shooting can support barn owls so by erecting nest boxes it provides the means for them to produce a brood. This is one of the many projects I am looking to run within North Wales on our members' land. With coverage amounting to 19% of North Wales it is a fantastic resource that will contribute massively to reaching local biodiversity targets."

Site visits to identify potential sites for the boxes are being carried out by Alex Hatton and biodiversity officers in Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire and Wrexham. Recent site visits in Denbighshire have identified seven new locations for boxes.

Kate Burgess, Biodiversity Officer for Denbighshire County Council said "The shooting land we visited is ideal for supporting broods of barn owls. The habitat is so good for many species of wildlife, particularly barn owls, as it provides the ideal habitat for their major food source, small mammals."



. The nesting boxes initiative is part of BASC's Green Shoots programme which is a unique collaboration between people who manage land for shooting and other conservation groups. It allows access to land used for shooting for survey and management work designed to meet North Wales's biodiversity targets to improve the range and diversity of plants, animals, birds and insects.

. Pictures of the nesting boxes are available for high resolution download, for more details contact the press office on 01244 573031.

More Articles by British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) ...

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