Removing barred owls easier than thought
GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) -- Shooting barred owls to make room for threatened northern spotted owls is cheaper and easier than some people had imagined.
Equipped with a specially modified shotgun and a digital owl caller, biologist Lowell Diller found that once he arrived at a known site, it took an average of two hours and 23 minutes to call in, shoot and process a barred owl. He estimates direct costs at $100 to $150 per bird.
Done on private timberland outside Eureka, Calif., the study represents the first feasibility study of removing barred owls, and was published online last month in Wildlife Society Bulletin.
It comes as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has started a $3.5 million six-year experiment to remove 3,600 barred owls from sites in California, Oregon and Washington.