Two owl boxes ready to be hung in a tree.

New Westmoreland Land Trust Owl Boxes

New Westmoreland Land Trust Owl Boxes
Installing two new screech owl boxes at the St. Xavier property


We recently installed two screech owl boxes at the Westmoreland Land Trust St. Xavier property. Xavier Nature Preserve is 248 acres and was recently purchased by the Westmoreland Land Trust. It is located off Route 30 in Unity Township, Pa., immediately south of the Saint Vincent College campus, and just 0.3 miles from the college’s Winnie Palmer Nature Reserve. As the crow flies, the nest box is exactly 1 mile from Saint Vincent’s Dupre Science Pavilion where their Biological Sciences Department is housed. The nest boxes are located at the edge of a grassy area with shrubs and scattered trees behind the boxes. The property is mostly agricultural in nature – now planted with native grasses, and a couple streams and patches of woods exist nearby. Given the proximity between this property and the college, we look forward to helping the Westmoreland Land Trust maintain St. Xavier in a natural state with a high potential for conservation activities and biological studies. Saint Vincent faculty and students maintain this nestbox for the purposes of research, education, and public outreach. PixCams, Inc. (, donated the camera and associated infrastructure, as part of an ongoing collaboration with Dr. James Kellam at Saint Vincent College. The property is the former site of the St. Xavier Academy and convent for the Sisters of Mercy. The private school for girls (grades 1-12) and boys (grades 1-8) suffered a great fire in 1972, closed, and was demolished. The Academy had its start on property now owned by Saint Vincent College and Archabbey when the Sisters arrived there in 1843. They moved from what is today’s college campus to a neighboring farm donated by one of the Archabbey’s parishioners. See… for more history.

Small camera installed inside of owl box.
A look inside an owl box showing the camera installation.
A ladder showing how high the owl box is in the tree.

Installing an owl box high in a tree.

Owl box placed high in a tree.

A view of one of the owl boxes from the ground.

An owl box hanging in a tree near the edge of a field.

All set up in the perfect location and ready for someone to call them home.

Watch the WLT Owl Box 1 LIVE on YouTube

Watch the WLT Owl Box 2 LIVE on YouTube

Do you have any owls on your property? Did you set up any boxes or do anything to attract them? Do you have any tips on what worked and what didn’t? We’d love for you to tell us about it in the comments below.

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