Friday, August 15, 2014

Farmer leaves wheat on field to bring wild birds back

A man living in a remote village of Turkey’s Black Sea region has been planting wheat in his fields and does not harvest it, in order to feed wild birds and thus keep them in the area.

Tahir Öztürk, 29, who runs a shop for door and window restorations in the town center of Gümüşhane, decided to plant wheat in his fields in the Boyluca village four years ago in order to “hear the sounds of wild birds once again.”

Öztürk said many villagers had moved out of Boyluca and ceased to plant their fields, meaning that many birds, particularly partridges, stopped returning to the village, as they were unable to find food anymore.

“Four years ago, my uncle Halil and I decided to plant our fields with wheat so we could hear the partridges in our village again and support wildlife here,” said Öztürk.

He and his uncle have been planting wheat in their 2.8 hectares of land ever since.

“We do not harvest the wheat, but leave it for the animals. There were no birds here before. Now we can see many different kinds of birds after planting the wheat. We have spent around 6,000 Turkish Liras, and the Nature Protection and National Parks Department supported us for this year’s planting. We will continue to plant here,” Öztürk added.

He also called on authorities to open a road to their field, saying they had to carry seeds of wheat on foot for around 600 meters because there is no proper road to the field.

“It is difficult during the planting season. We carry seeds on our back for 600 meters. We want a road top come here,” Öztürk said.

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