A MAN who has dedicated more than 35 years to looking after birds has been rewarded for his efforts.
Bob Sheppard, of Beech Avenue, Bourne, was recognised for services to conservation with a British Empire Medal in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List which was unveiled on Saturday.
Since he moved to Bourne in 1975, Bob has been advising farmers on habitat creation and installing nest boxes for owls and birds of prey. He has made and installed more than 1,000 owl boxes and is known throughout the area as “the owl man”.
He has also developed a nest box for little owls and also provides nest platforms for peregrine falcons.
Bob says he’s proud that Lincolnshire has more barn owls than any other county in Britain.
He said the honour reflects the hard work and cooperation of the farmers, landowners and drainage boards. He also paid tribute to the hard work of his colleague Alan Ball, from Sleaford, who helps monitor the boxes in the summer.
Every year the pair ring more than a thousand birds of prey.
Bob said: “My family are thrilled by this award and I have had lots of cards and telephone calls since the news got out.
“I heard from the Cabinet Office last month that I had been nominated but I had to keep it secret.”