Parrot Rescue

Some time back, a person who could no longer own her Goffin´s Cockatoo approached me. She was looking for a home for her bird.

The Umbrella Cockatoo

It was 1976 when I first saw the species. In the quarantine of George Kroesen there were hundreds. The birds congregated in the farthest corner, each trying to hide.

Feather Plucking Observations

During my more than 40 years´ as an aviculturist I have been a prodigious note taker. I write down everything of interest, or have ledgers where I continuously add notes. An old edition of Joseph Forshaw´s Parrots of the World has a broken spine and is full of pieces of paper containing notes, or these are added to the margins of text or illustrations.

Cockatoos and Aggresion

Some time back I visited a home for unwanted birds. As I walked around, I discussed with the director the problem of unwanted cockatoos. Like me, she has found that males are the gender most commonly found in rescues. This is because males can become exceptionally aggressive as they reach sexual maturity, or when the unpredictable nature ingrained in their genes emerges.

Healthy Diet is Cornerstone to a Healthy Caged Bird

When I started keeping birds, information on diet was very deficient. A sunflower or safflower seed based diet supplemented with a bit of apple, endive and maybe a piece of carrot was deemed adequate. Fast-forward 40 years and our understanding of diet for cage birds has evolved considerably. Today we truly understand that to own a healthy parrot the cornerstone is a good, balanced diet.

Amazon Parrots

The day was typically hot and humid. It was 1979 and I had been invited to visit Ramon Noegel and Greg Moss, the former the doyen of Amazon parrot breeding in the US. Noegel achieved what at the time was seen as the impossible—producing young from multiple pairs of Amazon parrots year after year.


… The birds were Black-headed Caiques Pionites melanocephalus. The coloration suggested it was a pair and their three young. As is typical of many small parrots in the neo-tropics, the bird slept in the cavity. ..

The Sun Conure

I can recall that day in the 1970s as if it were today. I had walked into a quarantine station to see several pairs of a new species… a species that was commanding a hefty price– $800.00 per pair.

Blue and Gold Macaw

Over many months and two separate trips, I watched as a pair of Bue and Gold Macaws Ara ararauna nested in a dead standing Buriti Palm Mauritia flexuosa.

Toys for Pet Parrots

The concept of giving toys and enrichment to parrots dates back only about 30 years.