Posted by: atowhee | April 11, 2021


The Salem daily newspaper today had a fine article about a family welcoming Barn Owls onto their property near Ankeny NWR here in Marion County. I could not find the story on the paper’s website!

But the story, so admiring of the hosts and the owl family, led me to write this letter to the paper:

“Dear Editor:

As a birder and owl-admirer I thoroughly enjoyed your April 11 story (“The Eyes Have It”) about the Barn Owls welcomed on a farm near Ankeny NWR.

I want to let your readers know that those owls are among the world’s most adept mousers, are often welcomed on vineyards because of that.  In addition, we can all do something to help those birds thrive and survive.  Do not use D-Con and other systemic pesticides.  If a Barn Owl eats a poisoned rodent, it will die.  Any vertebrate that feeds on carcass of that dead owl will also die.  D-Con and similar poisons will kill through generations of wildlife.”


  1. Thanks Harry, I did not know about the passing of poisons thru generations. Though I don’t use D-Con I remember farmers back in Mississippi of my childhood using it and being taught as a lad to not touch it in the barns. DDT was also sprayed from crop dusters over the cotton fields.

    Stay ahead of the virus,


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