Burrowing owls hold up construction of building at Boca Raton High

It must be owl week. First the movie "Hoot" opens. Then I have a successful photo shoot on the west coast of Florida with the little burrowing owls, and now this article in the Sun Sentinel about them holding up school construction. Also, I did not know that Broward and Palm Beach had so many of them. I've only seen them in Collier and Lee County.

Interestingly enough, the article also states:
"Under the terms of the Federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act, it is illegal to harm a burrowing owl, its nest or its eggs. State law requires a permit to build on owl grounds and forbids disturbing burrows while they house chicks or eggs, most likely from Feb. 15 to July 10.The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission classifies the owls -- numbering about 2,500 according to the most recent official survey six years ago -- as a species of special concern. That means they have a high vulnerability to factors that may lead to their becoming a threatened species if they are left without protection or management. The smallish ground-dwellers originally made their homes in grasslands and fields. As the state has developed, they've made their way to airports, ball fields and land cleared for construction. Palm Beach County is ranked third in the state for burrowing owl population, trailing only Lee and Broward counties, said Ricardo Zambrano, a commission biologist."

Read the entire article here: