Fifty kilometres from Johannesburg, a couple saves owls

JohannesburgWritten By: Kalden OngmuUpdated: Oct 23, 2021, 01:19 PM IST

Brendan Murray releasing an owl into the wild Photograph:(WION)

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Danelle and Brendan Murray have a sanctuary that has about 50 owls. The sactuary is located in Harbeesport

Every animal and bird has a role to play in nature. It is part of the complex food chains and food webs. Even so, conservation of some species makes headlines and others generally don't.

Take owls for example, the bird plays an important part in nature and keeps population of rodents in check. But the bird isn't 'glamorous' so to speak. But Brendan and Danelle Murray, a couple from South Africa have made protecting birds, especially owls, their life's work.

The Murrays run an owl sanctuary in Hartbeesport. The town lies about 50 kilometres from Johannesburg. For Danelle and Brendan, protection of wildlife is a life-long passion. They secured this piece of habitat to protect decreasing number of owls and look after them.

“There’s a very high mortality rate on owls in South Africa," says Danelle Murray, underlining the need to protect owls.

There are 12 species of owls in South Africa and out of these there are few that are endangered and are rapidly decreasing in numbers. 

"When owls disappear, rodents take over. The rodents of course all sorts of problems." Danelle says

"Every animal out there has got an important role they play to keep this structure together,” She says driving home the point of need to protect owls.