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Saturday, December 17, 2011

Biodiversity  We are so thrilled at the ever increasing biodiversity on Merri Bee Organic farm.   It is easy to grow a  food forest really  and with some water gardens you can make a  happy place for yourself and many other creatures. Lots of new birds are being heard each year and amazing insects are being found.

   This one young tree in the middle of a bare paddock was a hummin with  hundreds of insects in spring.
The farm has a lot  more biodiversity now as  shelter, water and food have established.  
 . We stopped baiting rats about 5 years ago hoping the owls would come back. It’s lovely to hear the  owls at night now, I hope they are feeding on  the rodents which I admit have got out of hand  at the moment. Some owl nest boxes are in order.   
Basics of an owl nest box : 
at east 16 '' square floor space, 4 inch diameter entrance hole, low enough for fledging owls to scramble out of eventually, an access door to clean out the nest once a year, drainage holes in the corners, hung at least 12 feet off the ground preferrably in shade  and about  50 meters away from the area you want patrolled. Owls prefer not to hunt in their immediate nesting area. 
Micro bats eat 600 insects a night each. You can search for bat box plans on the net. Parents feed baby owls ( average family size 5 babies)  2 to 3 rodents a night each. Parents eat one a day. Wow! I need 2 owl boxes in the hope that at least one is found and used..

A Willy Wagtail nest with eggs.

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