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From the parrot's beak: April Fools edition

Woman and cockatiels enjoy Connecticut Parrot Society's Featherfest last week.
Woman and cockatiels enjoy Connecticut Parrot Society's Featherfest last week.
George Sommers

- PHOTO CAPTION: Cockatiels and their person enjoy last weekend's Featherfest, held by Connecticut Parrot Society.

- George Sommers resigning as editor of "From the parrot's beak" boston. For more details, please go to the end of this article.

- Parrot shouts name of owner’s dead wife in front of new partner; banished to garage for three years:

- Hyacinth macaw playfully pecks Anne Hathaway, voice of Jewel in "Rio" and "Rio 2" at publicity photo op:

- Parallel universe: What do parrots and the center of our galaxy have in common? The unexpected and admittedly somewhat tenuous connection can be found in two articles published the same week in prestigious science journals:

- Australian sulphur crested cockatoo appears in 15th century Italian Renaissance painting; providing insight on history of trading:

- Wild, domestic, feral, tame or naturalized parrots: where is the line drawn? Feature story by George Sommers in the April "Pet Gazette". Scroll to Page 10 and click on page to enlarge.

- Stool pigeon parrot story debunked: Chalk it up to April Fool's.

- Psittacine cinema: African greys vs. eclectus March Madeness basketball game: -- Jasmine the parakeet and friend make a bird toy from paper and thread: - Disco used to be a spy: -- Sage the meyers parrot and friend: -- African grey playing with food dish: -- What am I, your clown? do I amuse you?: -- cody having a chat with Mom: Movie on 2012 11 24 at 20 -- Amazing parakeet show:

- Legal briefs: Yes, in Virginia; there is a loosening of restrictions on endangered list macaws as pets: -- California city says restaurant's parrot aviary more of a detraction than attraction: -- Three parrot deaths at roadside zoo; neglect alleged. -- Texas city legally protects introduced parrots; recognizing commercial value as tourist attraction: -- Another hoarding/abuse case involving birds; this time in Florida:

- Zia Pueblo in need of parrot and macaw feathers. The Zia Pueblo of Central New Mexico have a deep reverence for the natural world, including a connection with parrots and macaws. So much so that, as part of their cultural and religious dress and obligations, many parrot feathers are used. Because of wear and tear and additional use as one-time offerings there is a constant need for more feathers. To this end, they are requesting parrot caregivers send any moulted feathers they may have to the group. It should be noted that feathers should only be sent from within the United States, otherwise CITES permits would be required. Please send to: Celestino Gachupin, 1087 Zia Blvd, Zia Pueblo, NM 87053-6028 Learn more at

- Tiki the conservation dog worked hard to protect endangered kakapos by rooting out stoats and other introduced predators. He passed away at the age of 11 (human) years::

- Loss of habitat, hunting and illegal trapping are causing three macaw varieties, the glaucous, little blue and indigo (or Lear's);. to disappear. Salmon-crested cockatoos were listed as a threatened species in 2011 wherever they occur in the world. The Fish and Wildlife Service listed this subspecies of cockatoos in danger of extinction due to illegal logging and pet-trade trapping in areas of Indonesia.

- "Bitten by parrot; initial encounter!" = medical code W16101XA as reported in a front page "Boston Globe" article featuring a photo of a Quaker parrot. Many medical professionals decry the code as overly complex.

- Birds of a Featherfest: Jamie Whittaker, Lanette Raymond, Concetta Ferragamo, Amazon Cracker, Denise Cabral, Bob and Barb Cosgrove - not to mention this editor - were among the notable names in aviculture attending last weekend's Featherfest, sponsored by Connecticut Parrot Society.

- Health matters: 40 hazards to birds:

- Pass the syrup: Patricia Sund demonstrates waffle making for parrots on a video posted on The Bird Channel. -- How can parrots eat red chili pepper without burning their tongues? Birds can't taste the capsaicin that makes chilies hot. The pepper plants originally developed this as a natural defense against mammals that might eat them, because the chili pepper seeds would not survive a trip through the mammalian digestive tract, but they can apparently survive a bird's. The parrots may favor the red chilies because they are more eye-catching than other colored peppers.

- Talking bird people talk: The latest in tricks and training from Parrot Wizard Michael Sazhin: -- Lara Joseph blog: Lara hosts a training session onn 4/19 10-6 in Tiburon, CA Info: -- Barbara Heidenreich shares training with an elite crowd of scientists, researchers, students and animal trainers:"Snowball the Dancing Cockatoo" by "Boston Globe" columnist Sy Montgomery won the Readers Choice Award at the New Hampshire Literary Awards.-- Sally Blanchard reports,"Most cockatoos don't like to be left and it is not uncommon for them to balk at going back into their cages when their caregivers are leaving for work. Some carry the game to extremes by hanging off of the back of their cages against the wall. Of course, the more frustrated the person becomes the more intensely the cockatoo plays the game. One woman reported to me that the moment she was ready to leave for work and her 'too knew he had to go back into his cage, he jumped off of his stand and ran into the bedroom to hide under the bed. She had to get down on her hands and knees and reach under the bed to retrieve him and of course he was difficult to catch. The more upset she became the more fun he had. Finally she would drag him out from under the bed and he would laugh hysterically." Recommendations for this issue, and more funny parrot stories in Sally's Companion Parrot Website: T -- Les Embrey of Mass. Cage Bird Association writes on "Communicating with your Parrot" in the April "Parrots Magazine". file:///C:/Users/House/Downloads/-parrot%20comunications.pdf

- Zupreem courts decision: Zupreem has been providing free bags of food to the Flapping Feathers Club of NJ, which they have been using as door prizes in exchange for an ad in the club's newsletter. The company recently made a decision to switch to vouchers and asked for email addresses of club members to direct mail them with offers. Club officer Sheldon Orloff is looking to tweak the deal, and asking for suggestions/comments from club members.

- Clubbin': Michael Simmons from a World of Wings will be the guest speaker at Woodies Wings Parrot Club on Tues. 4/1. This is a meeting not to be missed. Mike will discuss many aspects from feeding and management to training and conditioning of parrots. -- Parrot Society Of New England hosts Jason Crean at its 4/5 1:30 meeting at the Best Western, 13500 Willow St., Manchester. Crean contends that specially blended teas for birds can help those springtime issues such as: feather picking and plucking, reproduction, digestion and moire. Jason Crean also appears at Northeastern Avicultural Society's meeting Sun. 4/6 8-12 at Westford (MA) Sporting Club.

- Showtime: 3/28-30: Clicker Expo - Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel, 777 Waterside Drive, Norfolk,Virginia - 781-398-0754 - -- 3/29: Peninsula Caged Bird Society Bird Festival and Mart - The Columbian Center, 100 Columbus Way, Newport News, VA - 9-4 - 757-223-9440 - -- 4/6: Barbara Heidenreich Parrot Training Workshop - Fauna, 265 West 87th Street, New York, NY - 11-2 and 3-6 - 212-877-2473 -

- Helen Hanson, ASA’s Long-time Membership Secretary, passed away suddenly 3/18/14. For many years, Helen was the face of ASA at Bird Marts, American Federation for Aviculture Conventions, local meetings, and more. In addition to being the public face of ASA for many years before retiring as Membership Secretary, Helen was extremely active in the background and remained one of our most valuable proof-readers of the Avicultural Bulletin before sending it to print.

- Rescue me: Donate to help Suni with her vet bills -- Center for Avian Rehabilitation and Education needs help in receiving 1,000 LIKEs in the month of March so that they may receive 1,000 pounds in donated Lafeber bird food. Please LIKE their page AND Brook-Falls Veterinary Hospital and Exotic Care at this link: -- Time is running out and the parrots need your help! March is the major fundraising month for Foster Parrots and all funds donated up to $25,000 will be matched!

- Cockatiel found-3/26 by Senior Constable Melissa Watherston. Very friendly and loves jewelry. He is currently being held at the Hervey Bay (Australia) Police Station. Please call 4128 5333 More@ -- Rose breasted cockatoo stolen $2500 reward:

- Disco the parakeet's LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Hello, George! How did I not know about you until now? Thank goodness I was able to subscribe to you - I just did so - but I wonder what else the humans are not telling me. (They just found out this week I used to be a spy - I guess I forgot to tell them, and they forgot to tell me about you?) Seriously, I have all kinds of wonderful stuff to share with my friends and fans and followers and subscribers this week, and all thanks to you. Well, the Calgary family/rescue isn't a happy thing - I told folks about it last week and encouraged them to make donations if possible - but at least the six birds are home, their son was able to come home pretty quickly, and people from all over are rallying around them to help them work their way through this fog of grief and loss. Bird to your mother! Love, Disco the Parakeet PS - Like I said, I used to be a spy.

- BTW, RE: EDITOR'S NOTE at the beginning of this article: APRIL FOOLS!!!!!!

- News tips: Audrey O'Connor, Sanggay Dhorje, Dennis Bohn,Viki Bullock, Concetta Ferragamo, Mary Angel, Irena Schulz, Republic of Birds, Concetta Ferragamo, Emmett Renshaw, Tonja Ante, Flapping Feathers, Deb White, Ray Riley, Lisa Bono, Lonarae Harner, Linda Rubin, Arlene Levin, Linda Bringle Pearl

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