Kempton Park SPCA now has a natural remedy for rodent control in the form of a barn owl box that was installed in one of the trees.Owlproject.org donated the box which sits high in the tree waiting to be occupied by a barn owl.
“The main purpose of a barn owl box is to eliminate the use of rat poison and to attract owls which will in turn control rodents around,” said Delina Chipape, project co-ordinator at the Owlproject.org.
“One barn owl can eat up to 2 500 rats a year.”
Kira Sparrow, manager at Kempton Park SPCA, said this project not only serves as a means of rodent control but as a way to debunk the myths and omen around owls.
“Kempton Park SPCA and the Owlproject.org have partnered up and we are going to be doing talks about owls at schools in Kempton Park and Tembisa. During the talks we will inform and educate children about the benefits of owls and the history of owls among other things,” said Sparrow.
“The SPCA is opposed to any form of rat poison, which is a slow, suffocating death and the after-effects are very dangerous, because when a rat eats the poison and a cat or owl eats the rat, that animal is also going to die. We are therefore looking for a natural eco-friendly remedy for rodent control.”
Chipape described a barn owl and said: “It has a white heart-shaped face, brown back with black eyes.
“This box is specifically made for barn owls as it caters to its preferences, which include dark and quiet spaces with a flat surface. This is why you also find such owls in ceilings.
“Through our partnership with the SPCA we hope to create owl-friendly children.
“We work hand-in-hand with EcoSolutions who also do bat boxes. They designed and donated the barn owl box to us and we donated it to the SPCA.”