About this blog:
I’m going to use this to clear the air a bit and get you used to what you can expect to find on this blog, so hang on tight!
I’m going to come across to some, sounding like a total asshat. I may be rude, insulting, obnoxious and even degrading, but rest assured, these comments are going to be saved for issues, topics, people and places that are well deserving of them!
I have played the “politically correct” role now for the 10 years or so I have worked in the field. I have been patient and mild mannered. I have held my tongue when I felt like biting someone else’s head off. I have done everything “right” according to most diplomatic standards.
Now I find myself looking in as an outsider, no longer being employed and having very little at stake with any specific organization in this field, or the entire Animal Welfare umbrella. Part of me is a bit sore at this; after 10 years of playing the diplomatically correct role, to be cast aside and tossed out like used rubbish. There’s a larger part of me, however, that’s jumping for joy at the freedom I now find myself with!
I no longer have to report to any specific person in this field as my “boss”. People can no longer use the birds’ or other animals’ wellbeing as blackmail over me. I’m free to say what I like about any issue I like and don’t have to worry about donors pulling their funding and support. I’m more free now, then I ever was when I worked in this field as a full-time career. Ironic that I’m more free to speak in depth about welfare issues now, as a private citizen, then I was as a slave to a signed paycheck from any of the organizations in this field, isn’t it?
Here’s a list of some of the potential people and places I might piss off with future posts:
Multi-million dollar organizations whose narcissism runs so deep that everyone else is always at fault and they can do absolutely no wrong.
Breeders, who willingly and knowingly contribute to the wild capture and smuggling of parrots in the illegal animal trade in order to get “fresh breeders”.
Breeders who breed more and more of these animals that only contribute to an ever-increasing homeless population…
You know what? The Hell with it… Breeders across the board. Anyone who has such a twisted view on “loving animals” needs serious psychiatric help if their form of “love” means sticking the object of that love in small cages, forcing them to mate and then selling the offspring for money. (and trust me, I’m being kind assuming they even “love” animals)
Hoarders, whether they are people or “legitimate” organizations that keep animals (especially birds) under lock and key in miserable conditions because they have some sick perversion of what it means to be an “animal lover”.
Your typical “bird club” member, or what I like to refer to as “parrot person”. You know, the ones that like to parade around their colorful Macaw in public so people can marvel at the brilliant colors and talking ability, without once, ever discussing the serious issues like psychology, biology, feather plucking, self mutilation, amount of care needed, wild instincts on overdrive in captivity, etc. and usually among the first people to refer someone to a pet store or a breeder to buy a bird.
What I stand for:
Parrot’s Rights. The mutual bond of respect a human can show for their feathered companion. This isn’t love. This is respect. Without that foundation, nothing built is ever going to last when it comes to a relationship with a bird.
If a person has truly discovered this level of relationship they can have with a bird, they simply won’t be discussing some of the issues mentioned above like methods of breeding, where to buy a bird, whether chicken is a viable food for a parrot (can we say “cannibalism”?) and so on.
I am in favor of eco-projects that look to rescue, reintroduce and conserve these animals in their native habitats. I am in favor of adopting birds that are already stuck here, living amongst humans for the duration of their lives with no ability to return to the wild.
I will very rarely criticize groups that at least work towards these goals without demonstrating the attitudes and actions mentioned in those other groups of people I may piss off.
I’m not just a “cat and dog” person. My experience goes back to wildlife rescue and rehab. Sure, I’ve worked with cats and dogs over the years, but thanks to my “roots” I see a much bigger picture than just the animals cuddled up at the foot of our beds every night.
After working with farm animals, I’m also a dedicated vegan. I’ve seen too much of the aftermath in those lives to ever even risk remaining a part of the cruelty and torture. Of course an occasional bunny may get mowed down under a tractor, or an ant colony flooded out by irrigation but my actual food source no longer requires the intentional killing and abuse of the animals that it once did.
I have a natural affinity towards parrots. I have worked at some of the largest and smallest organizations involved in their care and rescue over the years. (Strange as it may seem, I have never signed a NDA for any of the places I have worked. I can now see the HR people at some of these organizations turn a bright shade of white as they go through their records to verify this!) I can walk into an aviary of parrots and within days, have them talking to me, walking up to me, landing on me and in some cases, building nests for me?!
I would typically say I’m a “Grey” person (and some people might understand what that means), but truth be told, birds of various species tend to flock to me, even if I do have my own preference. I’ve made friends with Amazons, Macaws, Cockatoos, Caiques, Senegals, Conures, Finches, Lovebirds… I let them choose me, not the other way around.
I do have a bias, I’ve made that clear. The posts I make in this blog may be about any number of issues or topics that come up in this field, so I felt it was only fair to warn you about the direction I would be leaning. Read it if you like, ignore, it, criticize it, insult it, I really don’t care. As I said, I’m free. I’m free to say the things that need to be said but everyone else is too tied down to say.
A word about TNR (Trap, Neuter, Return):
People see I worked with animals for so many years, they assume, by default, that I support every Animal Welfare movement that’s ever been created. I’m going to save the would-be do-gooders from petitioning me about any involvement in TNR programs.
Until I see actual, hard data that proves, beyond any external factors, that TNR programs work for the benefit of the environment (not just the cats) then I will not support them.
If a bird who’s been abused for a lifetime or taken directly from the wild, can learn to adapt to life with humans, there’s absolutely no reason a feral cat (domesticated for thousands of years to be people-friendly) can’t also make that same adaptation. Lack of money, time and effort lead to “TNR” programs (the biggest gripe I have is that “R”) that place these animals BACK in the wild after capturing them.
Mathematically, if taking the life of one feral cat saves the lives of hundreds of wild animals they would have killed (including the predators whose food source they’d be stealing), then the numbers speak for themselves.
Enjoy the reading… flaming… mud slinging… name calling… whatever else you may end up doing!