Beneficial Management Practices for Saskatchewan Species at Risk:

Beneficial Management Practices for Saskatchewan Species at Risk:

Beneficial Management Practices for Saskatchewan Species at Risk: Burrowing Owl Endangered Mottled pattern of dark and light brown with white spots

Underparts pale brown white to Long, thin, bare legs Large yellow eyes Coo-cooo call

Brian K Jeffrey Prefer open grasslands with a mosaic of short & long vegetation void of trees & dense shrubs Require an abundance of burrows and wetland(s) or water Eat grasshoppers, insects, mice, voles, young gophers, toads, snakes,

salamanders and small birds Located in the southern Saskatchewan Status: Endangered Declined due habitat loss and fragmentation, decreased food availability, fewer burrow providers, collision with vehicles, pesticides and mortality during migration

~250-300 of pairs in Saskatchewan Beneficial Management Practices Grazing Reduce heavy livestock use at nest sites during May through June Graze heavily (10 cm in height) to provide nesting sites or within 100m of known site Graze lightly (30-100 cm in height) in

adjacent areas but no more than 1 m Grazing (contd) Avoid placing salt blocks near nest sites Avoid water development (i.e. dugouts and dams) that disrupt the flow of water to lowlying wetlands or reduce the functionality of the wetland Habitat Size and Woody Vegetation

Maintain grassland pastures ~ 160 acres in size (65 ha) Do not plant trees or shrubs on native or tame grasslands Reduce or remove woody vegetation in native or tame grasslands Forage Harvesting Delay harvesting of tame hay until after

July 1st Leave narrow strips of unmowed vegetation Harvest only part of the hayfield Cultivation/Tillage Plow fields early (mid-April) to remove potential nest burrows in crop field Use direct seeding or zero-till wherever

possible to avoid tillage during nesting Retain fragments or blocks of native prairie wherever possible Converting Cropland to Perennial Cover Convert cultivated land to perennial cover of recommended herbaceous species Seed short or mid-height and less invasive grasses in forage mixes such as blue

gramma grass or needle & thread Management of Burrowing Mammals Maintain healthy populations of badgers or other burrowing mammals Maintain healthy populations of ground squirrels (or gophers) Avoid use of rodenticide where owls are nesting or foraging areas

Management of Burrowing Mammals (contd) Control ground squirrel populations between October and March Apply control agents directly in ground squirrel burrows or directly to ground squirrels (i.e. shooting) Insecticides

Avoid spraying insecticides that reduce Burrowing Owl prey populations on tame or native pasture If insect control is necessary, choose insecticides with the lowest toxicity Avoid spraying insecticides within 400600m of burrows containing owls during breeding season Roads

Restrict traffic on roads through agricultural land from dusk to dawn Restrict traffic speeds on roads through agricultural land Avoid grading roads from May through June if possible

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