“James how to solve the Owl problem?” Cried one of my readers from Muar.
His Swiftlet farm is located at an Oil palm plantation. He is a regular user of Love potion and his birds’ population has been increasing steadily since he uses Love Potion last year.
Lately Owls have flied into his farm and killed many birds. As the results the population reduces remarkably within weeks.
Now Swiftlets are afraid of the farm and reluctant to stay. Ever since this incident many swiftlets have migrated to nearby Swiftlet farms.
“James I had installed light at the entrance- hole, even sharp spikes and electric wire to shock the Owl but they don’t seem to scare. They still fly into the farm. What should I do?”
As I had mentioned many times Owl is not afraid of those florescent lights or neon light at the EH. In fact they like it. When the light is switched on during dusk there would be lots of insects circling around the light. This attracts Bat as well and other birds that hunt for insect.
This lively activity around the light at the EH attracts Owl and tempting them to ambush from far. The Light also attracts Bats to fly into the farm. Once the Owl observed the movement of Bats and Swiftlets that fly into the farm their natural instant tells them that there are many preys in the farm.
This would make the Owls fly into the farm. Once they have got used to easy food (swiftlets) they will never leave. In some cases Owl even live in Swiflet farm. Chasing them away is hard. They are smart and have very sharp eyesight that helps them to hunt at night so swiftlet farm would be a good place.
If your birds’ population suddenly reduced or there are many dead birds, eggs on the floors, etc. You should watch out for Owl.
What you could do is to check the dropping of Owl in farm to ascertain whether they are there. It’s not that hard to identify them. Owl has got poor digestive system therefore their droppings are watery not like other birds droppings.
The Owls droppings are big patches scattered in the Roving and nesting areas. Therefore it is not advisable to have bars or hand railing in farm. These are the places that encourage Owl to perch and to ambush. But if you look at some of the pictures of Swiftlet farm in the Web, so many of them have iron bars at the stair areas and the inter holes. So how do we get rid of Owls? First of all avoid having places that Owls could perch.
The best is not to kill them but to capture it. My good friend from Kedah Mr. E is very skillful at this. He waits for them to enter the farm. Sometimes he waited for days. Once they are inside he would close the EH. That is the end of the Owl. Mr.E catches them with a huge fishing net. Beware, Owl has very sharp claws. Make sure you have a thick leather glove on.
I knew most Owls that are caught are killed but I prefer to release them far away. Mr. E once told me he caught a pair of Owl in his farm in Sik Kedah and later released them in Kuala Kangsar. He even painted the pair with blue paint on their tails to make sure they are not the same one if in future there were Owl attack.
So far none of them came back. To some extend many Owls were poisoned with rats that are injected with poison. Some are shot down by farmers who have gun. I personally don’t encourage this method of getting rid of Owl as I condemn killing. Some use Rats Glue to stick them. The smaller type of Owl can be easily glued but those big ones are hard to glue.
Before we decided to get rid of Owls make sure we find some signs that indicate that they actually attacked our birds in our farm. There are many occasions where I saw many Owls in an area but they didn’t attack the Swiftlet nor do they fly into the Swiftlet farm.
One of my farms in Northern Selangor, there are few pairs of Owls living in the Roof of an abandoned factory. My Swiftlet farm is located about 100 meter away. So far there is yet an attack in my farm. My birds’ population is growing very impressively and I found no sign of Owl attack. So I won’t disturb them for now until there they do.
Nature can live in harmony if we don’t disturb them.
Good Swiftlet farming All.
If you have any Swiftlet farming problems pls feel free to email me:
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