A hand-shake between Branch Manager Amy Beaton and Boyd Wykes in February 2020 seals the agreement for Augusta and Districts Community (Bendigo) Bank sponsorship of the Owl Friendly campaign   Photo J Gherardi


In February 2020, Augusta & Districts Community Bank Branch of Bendigo Bank provided sponsorship to the “Owl Friendly Margaret River Region” campaign created by the all-volunteer, Rodenticide Action Group (RAG).

The new financial support provided by the Augusta & Districts Community Bank is allowing the Rodenticide Action Group to purely focus its energy on protecting and caring for local wildlife by mounting a campaign to help turn the Augusta-Margaret River region into a rodenticide-free safe haven for wildlife.

80 per cent of profits generated at the locally owned Augusta & Districts Community Bank Branch is donated back to local community groups, projects and organisations within the Augusta Margaret River Shire.

In the last 21 years, Bendigo Bank’s Community Bank network has returned more than $230 million back to local communities across Australia, which has in turn, helped generate jobs and local economic growth.

Augusta & Districts Community Bank Branch of Bendigo Bank needs your support, so we can continue to help make a difference in our communities.

Switch and be the change today!


Amy Beaton I Branch Manager
Augusta & Districts Community Bank branch of Bendigo Bank

M: 043 868 0175
E: amy.beaton@bendigoadelaide.com.au

bendigo bank sponsor logo

The Augusta and Districts Community (Bendigo) Bank is recognised as the sole Sponsor of the Owl Friendly campaign.

Amy Beaton and Janelle Koehler with Bank display 3July 2020

Amy Beaton and Janelle Koehler with OWl Friendly display


masked owl

Photo S Castan

Many regional organisations are backing the Owl Friendly campaign through promoting awareness and taking action within their areas of influence and responsibility.

masked owl

Photo S Castan

Many regional organisations are backing the Owl Friendly campaign through promoting awareness and taking action within their areas of influence and responsibility.

Undalup Association

Through the Owl Friendly campaign to tackle rodenticide poisoning of our wildlife we are responding to an invitation by the Undalup Association of the Wadandi People to join with them in ‘Caring for Country’. As expressed in the Kaya (Welcome) on the Undalup website:  “Kaya, Nala Maat Kaya Noonduk (Hello, Our Family Welcomes You) to Wadandi Boodja (Saltwater People’s Country). We all come together on Boodja (Country). Whilst on Wadandi Boodja, we ask that you respect the area and walk softly on the Boodja.”

The Masked Owl, known as Yornitj in the Dworden language of the Wadandi People, is a ‘spirit shape-changer’ of deep cultural importance.

Inspirational Wadandi Cultural Custodian Zac Webb, Elder Wayne Webb and Peter Lane with Owl Friendly’s Boyd Wykes promoting the message of wildlife-safe rodent control at Fair Harvest’s Festival of Forgotten Skills, 29 November 2020.

Nature Conservation Margaret River Region

Nature Conservation is supporting the campaign with prominent messaging and advice through its communication outlets of website, Facebook and newsletters.  Owl Friendly rodent control is also a strong message in Nature Conservation’s Landowner Stewardship and primary school Our Patch and Adopt-a-Spot programs.

Who could ignore a plea from Echo the Barn Owl and raptor carer Nancy Tang to not use wildlife harmful brands of rodenticides? Certainly not several hundred Our Patch primary school children participating in Nature Conservation’s Bioblitz on the Margaret River foreshore 4 Nov 2020.

Margaret River Chamber of Commerce and Industry

The MRCCI is promoting the Owl Friendly campaign message to its membership, many of whom have potential to be recognised as ‘Heroes’ by adopting best practice and promoting the message to their customers.

Melissa Rose d’ath, President MRCCI, promoting Owl Friendly at her artisan store

Transition Margaret River

Transition has been supporting the Owl Friendly campaign from the outset through a powerful community reach on Facebook, newsletter, programs and events.

Transition’s karen majer with owl friend boyd wykes

Margaret River Busselton Tourism Association

Having taken Eagles Heritage under its wing in 2021, a natural move for Owl Friendly and MRBTA was to join forces given that the wonderful year of Bendigo Bank sponsorship had ended. MRBTA is auspicing Owl Friendly’s accounts and contributing funds through sale of owl inspired merchandise. MRBTA is of course continuing to promote the Owl Friendly campaign message to its membership, encouraging best rodent control practice and recruiting tourism businesses keen to be recognised as Heroes to promote the message to their customers.


MRBTA Director Cinde Fisher with Amy Beaton, Manager Augusta and Districts Community Bank (Bendigo Bank) and Owl Friend Karen Majer

Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions

The Western Australian Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions is supporting research into the extent of secondary poisoning of wildlife from rodenticides. At the regional level, wildlife officers manage and support the care of sick and injured wildlife by veterinarians and wildlife care volunteers.

Margaret River encircled by Masked Owl breeding pairs as at summer 2019-20 Image Google Earth

The location of nest and roost trees of Masked Owl pairs have been lodged on the DBCA ‘NatureMap’ database as a basis for ensuring their protection in planning decisions

Augusta Margaret River Shire

In November 2020 the AMR Council voted unanimously to declare and promote the Shire as an “Owl Friendly” region. The Shire was already a partner in the Owl Friendly Margaret River Region initiative. Shire Health and Environment Officers have specified that contracted pest management is undertaken through ‘owl friendly’ means on its own premises and provide information to businesses on making responsible choices when meeting local government health standards for rodent control. Formal public endorsement by Council is a powerful means of getting our message out throughout our Shire and beyond.

The AMR Shire’s Health and Environment officers are providing information to businesses and households on making responsible choices when selecting rodenticides, as is the Shire in contracting pest management for its own premises.

Cinde Fisher, Board member of Owl Friendly sponsor Augusta and Districts Community Bank (Bendigo Bank) (right), presented the Shire’s Hero award to Deputy President Pauline McLeod at the ‘Locals helping local wildlife’ seminar on 27 November at the HEART.

Prominent displays at the Margaret River and Augusta libraries in 2020 helped get the Owl Friendly message out to our community. Pictured (from right), Library staff Kerry and Claire


Owl Friendly Heroes are organisations, businesses and individuals who are supporting the campaign by adopting (or requiring their pest control contractors to deliver) best practice rodent control and are willing to be recognised publicly for this leadership. Owl Friendly Heroes display a plaque and responsible rodent control advice at their public interface.

owl friendly hero plaque

‘Owl Friendly Hero’ plaques  featuring a beautiful Masked Owl painting by Tanya Edwards are presented to our Owl Friendly Heroes to recognise and promote their support fro the campaign.

First Owl Friendly ‘Heroes’ at the website launch at Lake Cave June 2020

Phil Pain and Ivy the Barn Owl educate while entertaining thousands of visitors each year to Eagles Heritage

eagles heritage wildlife centre

Eagles Heritage is best known for public displays and aviary exhibits that foster appreciation and understanding of birds of prey, underpinned by a strong conservation message. Behind the scenes, the centre’s 3 hectares of bushland hosts the largest collection of eagles, hawks, falcons and owls in Australia – injured birds being rehabilitated for return to the wild and disabled birds which due to the nature of their injuries are unable to make a sufficient recovery for release plus offspring bred in captivity.

A Masked Owl that was picked up debilitated and under attack from magpies in Riverslea in November 2020  flew off strongly after a week of ravenous feeding under care at Eagles Heritage.

owl friendly chopping board

Margaret River busselton tourism association

The MRBTA is supporting the Owl Friendly campaign through encouraging best rodent control practice by its membership and recruiting member businesses to be recognised as Heroes to promote the message to their customers. MRBTA is also an Owl Friendly ‘Hero’ in its own right through undertaking best practice rodent control on all of its own properties.

A range of beautiful, jazzy jewellery and other owl inspired creations by local artist Sarah Scheltema are being sold by the MRBTA at the Margaret River Visitor Centre and cave attractions, to raise funds to enable continued promotion of  wildlife friendly rodent control.

Witchcliffe Ecovillage founders Michelle Sheridan and Mike Hulme

witchcliffe ecovillage

In keeping with the world leading sustainability Witchcliffe Ecovillage enterprise, a  by-law banning use of SGARs will ensure that the Ecovillage is  a safe haven for wildlife, including the Masked Owls that have been heard hunting on the property.

Masked Owl fledglings found closeby to the Ecovillage in November 2020

Alex representing Voyager Estate proudly displays their Hero recognition plaque at the June 2020 Website launch

voyager estate

In line with a commitment to organic best practice viticulture and regenerative agriculture, Voyager Estate is committed to wildlife friendly rodent control, and passing the Owl Friendly message on to its many local visitors and those from further afield

Free Home Stay for vineyard rat catchers

A Barn Owl nest box was erected at a Voyager Estate workshop in June 2020 as a trial encouragement to Barn Owls as a means of controlling rodents around our region’s agricultural enterprises.  Pictured are box builder Steve Fairbairn with the Voyager installation team of Steve James, Glen Ryan and Nathan Carabott.

jewel cave cafe

Cindy Watterson has always practiced rodent management without baiting at her cafes.  She has the support of the Margaret River Busselton Tourism Association  for her popular Jewel Cave cafe, with the MRBTA having stipulated for all of their venues that their contractor not use second generation rodenticides if bait stations are ever considered necessary.

Geraldine Clarke and Hannah Nicholls proudly displaying Mitre 10’s Hero plaque

Mitre 10 Margaret River

Ask at Mitre 10 for owl friendly rodent control!

Owners Lloyd and Anne Shepherdson have been supportive from the outset of our rodenticide campaign. Gardening guru Josh Pain is a member of our Rodenticide Action Group but all staff at Mitre 10 Margaret River know which products to purchase if rodents are seeking shelter in your home.

The Local Margaret River

The Local Margaret River

The secret is getting out that there is great coffee and food to be had in the pet friendly Local Margaret River artisan gallery at 91 Bussell Highway.  Pictured is the Local’s Rachel Yugovich being presented with an Owl friendly ‘Hero’ plaque by James Bennett, our campaign’s ‘Hero Coordinator’. Well done Rachel for committing to wildlife responsible rodent control and helping spread the message.

Principal Wendy Roediger was presented with an Owl Friendly Hero plaque at an Owl Friendly seminar in Augusta in August 2020.

The Independent School

The Independent School is already a leader in conservation education on so many fronts including their Wadandi 6 seasons walk trail through their forest reserve. A talk to the Kindy class by Owl Friendly member Sam Hines naturally led to the school supporting the Owl Campaign as a Hero, and owls to be a class theme for the 2021 year.

Sam Hines, dubbed ‘The Owl Man’, was greeted by a parliament of owls when he revisited this owl friendly class.

Jodie Lane flanked by Owl Friend Karen Majer and Bendigo Bank Manager Amy Beaton

Fair Harvest

Jodie and Dorothy of Fair Harvest are leaders in sustainable practice and education in a myriad ways.  Adding Owl Friendly Hero leadership to the list was a natural extension.

The message of wildlife-safe rodent control on display at Fair Harvest’s Festival of Forgotten Skills, 29 November 2020.

Committee member Bruce Hamilton accepting Lower Blackwood LCDC’s Hero plaque at the Augusta community seminar in August 2020

Lower Blackwood LCDC

The Lower Blackwood Land Conservation District Committee is leading by example in rodent management at its  Kudardup offices and is powerfully placed to promote Owl Friendly awareness  through its agricultural community membership and outreach into the Augusta community. Chair Tim Crimp has a special connection through having a pair of Masked Owls residing on his Rosaglen farm, often seen ratting around his sheds.

Director Gene Hardy accepted C2C Explorer’s Hero plaque at an annual MRCCI-Nature Conservation sundowner  hosted at Surf Point Resort

Cape to Cape Explorers

Our rodenticide message will be heard far beyond our region through Cape to Cape Explorer Tours stepping out as an Owl Friendly Hero.  Cape to Cape Explorer Tours has credibility through best rodent control practice at its Surf Point Resort accommodation and through its Cape to Cape Moveable Feast catering component as a basis for encouraging its large local and visiting clientele to follow suit.

Accepting the Hero plaque at the Augusta Owl Friendly community seminar was veterinarian  Amy Forsythe, for whom wildlife care and rehabilitation is a passion.

Margaret River Vet Hospital

Michelle Doney and her team at Margaret River Vet Hospital and allied Augusta and Cowaramup clinics have always offered their services to care for wildlife in trouble, and were keen to extend this support by raising rodenticide awareness as an Owl Friendly Hero.  Our program includes providing support for veterinarians, who are at the sharp end of rodent poisoning in dealing with poisoned wildlife as well as pets, led by our group veterinarian member Felicity Bradshaw, who often helps out at the Margaret River Vet Hospital.

The Hairy Marron Cafe

Q. Both the Hairy Marron and Masked Owls are charismatic local wildlife under threat. What else do they have in common?

A. Paul Isles is bringing the plight of both to community attention through his popular Hairy Marron Café and off-road bike centre.  Paul manages rodents in accordance with Health standards without using SGARs  and strongly promotes the Owl Friendly message.

Margaret River Retreat

Ecotourism accredited Margaret River Retreat  on the Bussell Highway at Forest Grove is an Owl Friendly Hero for responsibly managing rodents themselves and getting the message out to their guests. As soon as Nick (pictured) and Sonia Edwards heard about the Owl Friendly campaign, they got in contact to get on board.

Glenbrook Estate

Glenbrook has long been a haven for wildlife and guests staying in the eco retreat’s chalets and camping ground.  Host Cherie Hindle, pictured with son Dan, is vigilant against foxes and cats in the retreat’s  forest refuge but accepts that a local  Masked Owl pair probably take the odd possum as well as rats and rabbits.

owlet nightjar

All of our region’s owls have been recorded at Glenbrook including this Owlet Nightjar spotted on the forest track.

Boyd  presenting a Hero plaque to Principal Peter Howse

Cowaramup Primary School

When Boyd presented a Hero plaque to Cowaramup Primary at a Monday school assembly, there was no doubting the commitment of children, teachers and parents to ensure an owl friendly Cowaramup. For many years the school has been home to a pair of Tawny Frogmouths and many of the children experience owls in their own gardens.

Owl artwork by Cowaramup Primary Year 2 students

Montessori Primary School

After Boyd had the pleasure of visiting for book week to talk about our nocturnal birds, Montessori Primary was keen to sign  up as an Owl Friendly Hero. With wildlife responsible rodent control in place and the message passed on through school newsletters, student Alex Fenton proudly accepted the school’s Hero plaque  at the November Owl Friendly seminar.

A haunting oil pastel of a Barn Owl by Year 6 student Ylori Marshall, who has a keen interest in our native bird and wildlife including ringtails, quenda, birds and frogs in her own backyard.

Accepting a Hero plaque at the November Owl Friendly seminar were Brucey (left) and Kai.

Rapids Landing Primary School

Inspired by a book week presentation by Boyd on Margaret River’s owls for this year’s theme of ‘Curious Creatures, Wild Minds’, Principal Lisa Helenius was keen for  Rapids Landing Primary to step up as an Owl Friendly Hero, ensuring responsible  rodent control at the school and promoting the message to staff, students and their families.

Boyd giving a wide-eyed owl impersonation for his book week visit to Rapids Landing Primary

Bec Bolton received Discover Deadly’s Hero plaque at the WA Herpetology Christmas break-up at the park in December 2020

Discover Deadly

Discover Deadly is a highly influential Owl Friendly Hero that has never used poisons for managing rodents and has capacity to raise awareness of visitors already clearly interested in the region’s wildlife and natural environment.

Owl Friendly Hero Smithereens

Patrick Smith accepting his Hero plaque for display at Smithereens Café


Smithereens Café, nestled off the highway in Cowaramup, has an added reason for settling in to enjoy a peaceful breakfast or morning coffee – proprietor Patrick Smith is a proud ‘owl friendly’ hero, promoting his commitment to meet health responsibilities  without using wildlife harmful rodenticides.

The Tube Nursery

Welcome to The Tube Nursery as our latest Owl Friendly Hero

Jackie and Jeremy had no hesitation in saying a big yes when approached to be our latest Owl Friendly Heroes.  Brilliant that we now have the opportunity to explain how to responsibly control rodenticides to the large, conservation-minded cliental of the highly popular Tube Nursey in Cowaramup.

Nutrien Ag Solutions Margaret River

Where Ag solutions are also Wildlife solutions

In order to service the agricultural sector, Nutrien Ag Solutions Margaret River must have staff training and standards for dealing with poisons that unfortunately are not required by some other outlets that sell rodenticides that pose major risks to wildlife, pets and people. Pictured are Director Ken Wrigglesworth and Sally Allingham proudly accepting an owl Friendly Hero plaque from Dr Boyd Wykes to be displayed on a dedicated  owl friendly product shelf at the Auger Way store.

What does success look like for Owl Friendly?

Chris Carlsen, Merchandise Manager, has provided heartening feedback that Couma blocks and Racumin paste are easily outselling the other products. The Couma blocks are especially important as they are used in outdoor bait stations where an ECU study has shown that a range of skinks, birds and marsupials access the box or feed on invertebrates as they leave the box, not to mention preying on the rats and mice for which the bait is intended.

Margaret River Art Studio

Owls an inspiration for Margaret River artists

In January 2022, Jennifer Gherardi’s Margaret River Art Studio  stepped up as an Owl Friendly Hero to promote responsible rodent control.  Jennifer is pictured receiving her plaque by Owl Friendly Hero Coordinator James Bennett.

To celebrate, artists associated with the Gallery including Susan Hood prepared works inspired by our Yornitj Masked Owl ambassador for an Easter 2022 exhibition.

Roo’s Leap Retreat

Spreading the owl friendly message in leaps and bounds

The Massie clan are promoting responsible rodenticide control to guests at their Roo’s Leap Retreat holiday accommodation, tucked into bush on the outskirts of Margaret River.

Karen Majer presented Andrea and Fraser with their hero plaque enveloped by one of several extraordinary Hope Perth murals that adorn the property. But these cannot compete with the real deal of the resident Kombegaar family.


A big thank-you to our many supporters in the Margaret River community (and across Australia) who donated a total of $3345 to a 2019 GoFundMe campaign for kick-starting the Owl Friendly campaign.

This base enabled the Rodenticide Action Group to produce awareness-raising Owl Friendly t-shirts, bumper stickers, information cards and posters.

owl friendly bumper sticker

Look for the bumper stickers with information cards on the counters of many supporting local retailers, available for a gold coin donation to cover costs.