Executive director Lauren Meads and Pluto of the Burrowing Owl Conservation Society at the 2018 field trip. (file photo)

South Okanagan volunteers needed for owl work party

The Burrowing Owl Conservation Society is hosting a work party to help with owl habitat

A work bee for owls is planned for Oct. 19 by the Burrowing Owl Conservation Society of B.C. (BOCS).

The field trip is an annual event where volunteers spend the day in the southern grasslands of the South Okanagan to do work now that the birds have migrated south.

Duties include digging new burrows, cleaning and repairs of existing dens following the summer season and removing invasive plants and vegetation from burrow entrances.

READ MORE: Video: Digging in for burrowing owls in the Okanagan/Nicola Valley

Last year, representatives of the World Wildlife Federation (WWF) joined the project which is done in partnership with the Nature Conservancy Canada in the first of a series of fall habitat restoration field trips.

Climate change has been one of the reasons for the society’s change in strategies with the organization’s partners in Canada and the United States that are working to increase the species’ numbers.

“That’s why this work with the burrows is so important. If the owls come back and everything’s (dens) filled up or there’s a bunch of grass in front or it’s filled up with water — so this really, really helps the owls that want to come back and breed again if we can get all their burrows sorted out,” said biologist Lauren Meads, BOCS executive director previously. “If they come to an area and there’s no burrow available to them then they’re going to move on and that creates extra risk to them for predation.”

READ MORE: Volunteers who give a hoot wanted for burrowing owl work party

There are about 20 spots available for those who would like to help and they generally go quickly so Meads advises those interested to sign up as soon as possible.

This event will take place in the newest site with the Nature Trust of BC in the White Lake area, south of Penticton.

“We will be working on installing a couple of burrows and fixing the fronts of the existing burrows with weed fabric,” said Meads. “This is your chance to reconnect with other members of the team, and share some good times .”

In their prime, the owls had previously used vacated dens of other animals including badgers, however there are few of those left and one of the mandates of the society over the years has been to build new ones for the birds of prey where they can raise their young in the spring and summer before their annual migration south.

In addition to this work, Meads operates a captive-breeding program out of their facilities on the Nature Trust’s property north of Oliver it shares with SORCO Raptor Rehab Centre.

To register for the field trip contact the society at lmeads@gmail.com


 

@PentictonNews
newstips@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


 MarkBrett
Send Mark Brett an email.
Like the Western News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

 

Devika Shah of the World Wildlife Fund Canada shovels some of the dirt from an existing den last year near Cawston. (file photo)

Volunteers work to create a new den for returning burrowing owls near Cawston last year. (file photo)

Just Posted

Penticton’s Barley Mill, Santa donate to SOS Medical Foundation

The brewery and local Santa raised $1,000 for the foundation on Dec. 7

Penticton & Wine Country Chamber of Commerce concerned about proposed business tax hike

The City of Penticton is considering raising the BTM to 1.83 per cent in 2020, 1.91 per cent in 2021

Give back to the BCSPCA this holiday season with Coldwell Banker

The Furry Paws for Santa Claus Holiday Fundraiser runs on Dec. 14

Summerland grape growers issue fundraising challenge

Gerry and Kathy Ryan have donated $5,000 to the Tree of Dreams fundraising campaign

Toys for Tots to Teens at South Okanagan secondary school

For the second year Pen High is hosting the annual Toys for Tots to Teens

‘Not a decision I came to lightly:’ Scheer to resign as Conservative leader

Decision comes after weeks of Conservative infighting following the October election

B.C. SPCA seizes dogs chained up outside among scrap metal, garbage

Shepherd-breed dogs were living in ‘deplorable conditions.’

B.C. plane crash victim identified; witnesses describe ‘explosion’

He was a flight instructor, charter pilot and owned an airstrip before leaving Alberta

BC Hydro offers tips as collisions with power poles increase

Region with the largest spike in collisions was the Lower Mainland at 16 per cent

Canadian airline passengers to be eligible for $1,000 in compensation for delayed flights

Passengers can also receive compensation for overbooking, lost luggage and other inconveniences

Shuswap’s Canoe Forest Products plywood plant to cut costs over Christmas

Predictions for future of Salmon Arm plant look positive, says general manager

Okanagan air ambulance receives approval to use night vision in rescue situations

BCEHS says this will benefit critically-ill or injured patients who require transport late at night

Second snowfall warning issued for Coquihalla Highway

Another 20 cm of snow is expected to fall by early Friday

Most Read