As was communicated in several previous statements, the release of a number of barn owls back into the Maltese countryside, which owls were bred and raised in captivity thanks to the respective Project that the Federation for Hunting and Conservation - Malta (FKNK) operates in Buskett Gardens, is currently at a very interesting phase, since a few months ago the FKNK installed three artificial nest-boxes within the Buskett gardens, which nests are expected to facilitate and encourage the reintroduction of breeding of this species in the Maltese countryside, through the mating of the barn owls that had been released.
After the FKNK obtained the necessary approvals and permits from the relative environment authorities (ERA and Ambjent Malta), two of the nests were temporarily installed following a methodology that does not damage the trunk of the mature Eucalyptus trees in the Valley of Buskett, and the other one was placed at Verdala Castle, thanks to the Office of the President of the Republic of Malta who granted this exclusive permission. The nests were manufactured on a model that is being used in similar successful projects in Ireland.
The President of the FKNK, Lucas Micallef, said "This project, which we know enjoys great support from the Maltese society, is a clear example of how much our community embraces priority towards the conservation of the natural environment, and continues to complement our work towards biodiversity."
A small number of the barn owls that were released was harnessed with a satellite device so that the FKNK can follow and acquire more information on the behaviour and movement of these nocturnal birds. In the coming months, the FKNK has plans for the expansion of this project to other places, even urban, in the Maltese islands.