Farmers encouraged to make land more wildlife friendly to help revive the Barn Owl population

Credit: Countrywise

Barn Owls are becoming a rarer sight in the North East, with only 4,000 pairs of left in the UK.

Between the 1930s and 2000's barn owls have declined by 70% in the UK.

Some of the reasons for this are:

  • The loss of the grasslands over which they hunt.

  • Intensifying farming practices.

  • The use of chemicals which kill the field voles and other small mammals on which barn owls feed.

  • Loss of their nesting sites from barn conversions.

  • The removal of old hollow trees.

Credit: Countrywise

Farmers are now being urged to make their land more wildlife friendly, in the hope that this will prompt a revival of the Barn Owl population.

Derek Proud went to meet a farmer who is taking part in a project to help the owls by creating breading areas for them.

Watch his full report here: