Rescue Me

Tegucigalpa, Honduras 2011 Crying out loudly, the scarlet macaw called to those who might rescue her. A man, apparently inebriated, was dragging her down the street by her feet and tail feathers “Voy a matarlo!” “I am going to kill it,” the man raged.  Losing feathers and skin, the situation seemed  hopeless, for the man’s […]

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National Bird Day 2013

National Bird Day 2013

Question:  What do you give a parrot who does not have even the basics of what they need to flourish? Answer:   A loving human being to adopt them and to bless their lives. In so doing, the humans that rescue and adopt birds are blessed with the tremendous gift of helping, caring, and loving.   […]

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Warts and Wisdom in Welfare and Conservation

Louisville, KY:  Many avian caretakers – biologists, veterinarians, behaviorists, aviculturists, sanctuarists (those who rescue and offer sanctuary to captive birds who have lost their homes) – gathered this past week for the Conservation and Welfare Symposium during the Association of Avian Veterinarians’ (AAV) Annual Meeting. Our objective was to consider the lives of wild parrots […]

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Where the Wild Wings Are

Where the Wild Wings Are

In a few weeks a group of veterinarians and avian bird care givers will gather for a “Conservation and Welfare Symposium” at the start of the Annual Meeting of the Association of Avian Veterinarians in Louisville, Kentucky.  We are purposefully combining conservation with welfare because we believe that what we know about both populations of […]

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National Bird Day 10th Anniversary

National Bird Day 10th Anniversary

It is the season of celebration, including National Bird Day on January 5th.  Though it has been in existence for 10 years, this year marked the first time it has received an official proclamation of support.  Yesterday Congressman Mike Quigley (D-Illinois)  read the Born Free USA National Bird Day resolution into the Congressional Record (the […]

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City Parrots for Conservation

City Parrots for Conservation

In recent years I have developed the mantra, “Everything is on the table for parrot conservation.”  We are losing so many species, so quickly, as well as the habitats in which they live, that I believe we need to consider every option for keeping these birds on the planet in sustainable ways.  This does not […]

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Free Falling

Rockland, Massachusetts:  August 28, 2011 (in the middle of Tropical Storm Irene)  I write this as a guest in the home of Marc Johnson and Karen Winsor of Foster Parrots.  The power is out due to weakened Hurricane Irene who is blowing through the area.  The power may be out here, but it was on […]

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Conservation and Trans-species Relationships

Conservation and Trans-species Relationships: Welfare Insights from the Field

Seattle, Washington, USA:  August 11, 2011 I am currently reading “Jung and the Parrot: Facts,  Interpretations, and Connections“  by Phoebe Linden in the “Minding the Animal Psyche” (Spring, Volume 83, 2010).  She writes about relationships between humans and parrots in terms of trans-species psychology where humans and nonhuman animals are “kin under the skin.”  In […]

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Intimate Conversations About Aviculture and Free Flying Parrots

Intimate Conversations About Aviculture and Free Flying Parrots

In January I attended the Parrot Festival in Houston Texas. While there I heard a presentation by Rick Jordan, “The Future of Aviculture.”  He expressed views that if we lose the ability for people to own and breed birds in captivity, we will lose a great good for the people involved, and for conservation and […]

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Illegal Parrot Trade Decreasing in Mexico

Illegal Parrot Trade Decreasing in Mexico

It’s so wonderful to highlight positive conservation news here, such as a recent report describing the decreasing illegal poaching of parrots in Mexico. Mexico has 19 species of endangered parrots, with trapping posing a great threat to their survival. Defenders of Wildlife wrote an extensive report in 2007, a year where approximately 65,000- 75,000 parrots were […]

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Owl Ethics – Spotted Owl versus Barred Owl

The northern spotted owl is in the news again, this time as linked to the death of 1200-1500 barred owls. This summer, the USFWS may release in an environemental impact statement their reccomendation to kill barred owls. This is in response to the increasing range of the native barred owl who pushes out the the […]

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Parrots Count

I live in a region in the United States  where there are thousands of feral or naturalized parrots: Florida.  I mourn that the native parrot, the Carolina Parakeet, is long gone from here.  I have mixed thoughts of the presence of nonnative birds, but this doesn’t mean that I don’t delight when I hear a charming […]

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Compassion for Pigeons - Avitrol Discontinued

Compassion for Pigeons – Avitrol Discontinued

Last month, Avitrol closed its doors. This company produced Avitrol, a poison that was used to remove birds from industrial and urban sites. Pigeons were the primary target. Against them, Avitrol works as a slow-acting nerve agent and causes hyperexcitability, salivation, severe tremors, erratic flight, and convulsions. Birds may take up to two days to […]

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Talking Turkey

Talking Turkey: Combining Gratitude with Conservation

It is two days after Thanksgiving here in the USA and I’m guessing that the majority of households have turkey in them. The USDA estimates that 45 million turkeys were eaten this weekend. That’s a lot of turkeys. From an evolutionary standpoint and based on sheer numbers, the North America wild turkey has greatly succeeded, […]

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Wings around the World

Wings around the World

I am now back in the states after some 40 hours in transit coming home from Guatemala. While there I concentrated on the Yellow-Naped Amazon, known in-country as the Nuca Amarillo, or simply, el loro. From my last blog entry you can see that the numbers of these birds have dramatically decreased from 15 years […]

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Flocking Behavior in Toledo Ohio

Flocking Behavior in Toledo Ohio

Who would have thought that Toledo would be a center of understanding flocking behavior in parrots?  First I was exposed to the human/bird flock in the Bird and Exotic Pet Wellness Center this week.  As part of my fresher course in avian medicine, Dr. Susan Orosz then took me to see Nancy Sloan Burke and […]

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