COST V CONSERVATION
If you are lucky enough to have a suitable building or tree to mount an owl box on, then you can buy a purpose-built owl nest box from the Barn Owl Trust for £65 (to go in a building) or £160 (for a tree). If not, then you have to factor in the cost involved in mounting your box on top of a telegraph pole, ensuring it’s in the right place to attract owls and faces away from prevailing winds. To do it ourselves we needed machinery, tools, long ladders and lots of brawn – none of which we had. It was looking like that we’d need deep pockets to pay for someone to come and do it for us. We didn’t have these, either. Enquiries about possible grants for the project led to nothing. We’d have to fund it ourselves. On top of that, after all our research via Barn Owl websites – and a good deal of pondering – it was the middle of January 2016, by now. We figured we had to get the box up by second week of February to give the owls plenty of opportunity to scope it out and, hopefully, use it this year. The Suffolk Wildlife Trust website at suffolkwildlifetrust.org has a directory of people who will supply and install owl boxes. I searched online and found Greenway Ecological in Wicklewood, Norfolk, who could do the job.