Endangered eagle owls raise younglings in Latvian forests

In order to promote the conservation and recovery of the population of the critically endangered species – the eagle owl (Bubo bubo) – in Latvia, the Latvian Ornithology Society (LOB) continues to install artificial nests in the forests. Some have already been populated with young owlets, reported LOB.

Out of four nests checked so far, three of them have three owlets each.

The nest tests will continue until mid-June this year, checking a total of 130 artificial nests set up in 2021, and about 50 out of 150 nests set up last year, as well as platforms previously built. Part of the artificial nests shall be checked by the employees of the Nature Conservation Agency. Most nest checks and the installation of cameras are carried out by enthusiasts and funded by private funds and donations.

“For the next nesting season, the aim is to put such cameras on all the nests inhabited by the eagle owls. The cost of a single set without installation and servicing is €350, and the cost of communications is around €180 per year. In general, at least six sets are needed to achieve this goal, so it is the donor support that is essential to achieve this goal,” explained the project manager of the Latvian Ornithology Society, Agnis Bušs.

In 2020, the National Species Protection Plan for the owl group approved at the national level provides for the installation of 2,961 artificial breeding sites until 2029. Thanks to the support of the Latvian Environmental Protection Fund, 280 artificial nests have been installed by the Latvian Ornithology Society in 2021 and 2022, but this year a further 120 nests are planned to be installed.

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