Denmark Council endorses owl friendly campaign

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A pair of Masked owls photographed during research for the campaign.
Camera IconA pair of Masked owls photographed during research for the campaign. Credit: Steve Castan

The Denmark Council has voted unanimously to endorse a volunteer campaign that aims to eliminate the use of rodenticides responsible for killing owls in the local area.

The move came after a 2018 report from Edith Cowan University’s Mike Lohr which found that Boobook owls were succumbing to secondary poisoning because of their consumption of poisoned animals.

The council heard that in recent years the increased use of second generation rodenticides had contributed to deaths in the local owl population.

Geoff Evans is the Convenor of the Denmark Environment Centre, which helped start the Owl Friendly Denmark Region project, he said that the death experienced by these hours was “long and painful.”

“It’s a very strong poison. The process (of dying) can last anywhere from a few weeks to a few months.”

The project was formally submitted to CEO David Schober by Cr Jan Lewis after a similar campaign was undertaken in the Augusta Margaret River region.

Denmark Shire Council Administration Centre.
Camera IconDenmark Shire Council Administration Centre. Credit: Laurie Benson

The Margaret River campaign started when three dead Masked Owls were found and sent for testing with all three shown to have high rodenticide exposure.

In response to the finding, the Margaret River council declared itself “owl friendly” and is discouraging the use of these rodenticides.

The Denmark Environment Centre hopes to gain similar council and community support in Denmark and will continue to raise awareness for the project over the coming weeks with the project not expected to involve any financial impacts.

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