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FAQs: Can I Build On a Cape Coral Vacant Lot That Has Burrowing Owls?

Answer: Yes, you can. Either and Affidavit or a Permit is all that is needed. You or your developer will need to create a protection zone or relocate the nest.

From the Cape Coral city web site:

Many people wrongly believe that nobody can build on a lot if burrowing owls occupy it. One of the key management practices in Cape Coral is the site inspection provided by the contractor prior to permitting. The contractor must submit a Burrowing Owl Affidavit with all building permits. All burrows on the project site must be reported on the affidavit.

The developer must first determine if there is any way to construct the project while maintaining a protection zone with at least a ten foot radius in all directions from the burrow entrance. Building around an owl nest is the best scenario for the owls.

If the burrow is located within the building envelope, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s policy is to issue permits to allow destruction of burrowing owl nest. In order to minimize the adverse impacts to the species when a nest is destroyed, the contractor or homeowner is strongly encouraged to place a “starter burrow” some place on the property.

Burrowing owls are one of the many treasures of Cape Coral FL. For more information about burrowing owl nests and help with staking or relocating nests (starter burrows), visit the Cape Coral Friends of Wildlife.

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