Herce and Liébana, are a couple of barn owl (Tyto alba) with which we are doing a fixation of adults in La Alcarria, Madrid. It seems that they like their new home because it only take a month and they already have eggs. If all goes well, both they and their chicks will reinforce in a short time the wild populations of this specie that have descended so much in the Community of Madrid through the last decades.
This technique of liberation consists in fixing a couple in a certain area introducing them in a hacking or artificial nest until they breed. Once the breeding has begun, hacking is opened and the adults raise the chicks in similar conditions as they would do into the wild. When the chicks finish their development and disperse, approximately half of the adult couples stay to live in this place, but already in absolute freedom conditions.
This is just one of the actions of our project “Conservation of nocturnal raptors linked to agricultural means”, known as “Alba Project”, which we are executing with the collaboration of the Ministry of Environment, Local Administration and Community Territory Planning of Madrid, and which seeks to make compatible the agricultural uses of dry land with the nocturnal birds that depend on these habitats in two areas of the Natura 2000 Network.
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