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Thursday, June 26, 2008

Quaker Parrots Featured in New NYC Recycling Spot

A friend on the Quaker Parrot Mailing List pointed out that one of New York's new Green NYC Public Service Announcements appears to feature an animated Quaker Parrot. Of course, real Quaker Parrots don't say "Tweet, Tweet;" they say "Ack Ack." But I'm glad to see one of Brooklyn's own wild Quakers promoting a "Green New York," because more trees mean more places for our remarkable green parrots to perch upon!

Green NYC - 30 second PSA #1

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Wild Parrot News From Beyond Brooklyn: Californians Rally to Declare Parrot As New State Bird

Californians Rally to Make Their State Bird a ParrotThe proprietors of ParrotNotQuail.com have organized an online petition which they hope will result in a parrot replacing the quail as the California State Bird. According to the site, more than 200,000 people have signed it.

California is home to a sizable population of wild parrots (whose most storied members are found in San Francisco), and while it's gratifying to see the Golden State's indigenous parrots getting some high-visibility cyber-recognition, California has a bad record in terms of being friendly to our beloved Quaker Parrots, being one of only two U.S. States in which ownership of a pet Quaker is a crime. My hope is that this new movement will underscore the degree to which wild parrot flocks are largely a "value-added species" to North American skies.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Brooklyn Parrots on PetLifeRadio.com

Brooklyn Parrots on PetLifeRadio.comPetLifeRadio.com, a recently-launched pet podcasting site, just uploaded an audio interview between myself and Diane West, editor of NewYorkTails.com. You can listen to this interview or download it to your ipod by clicking here.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Bay Ridge Parrots Face Uncertain Future

Two wild quaker parrots groom each other at a Brooklyn sandlot baseball field
Two wild Quaker Parrots at Bay Ridge's Dust Bowl.

The wild parrots which have long lived around one of Brooklyn's last sandlot baseball fields, an area dubbed "The Dust Bowl," will soon face down a $3.2 million renovation of the field that will significantly alter their ecosystem. As reported in the Brooklyn Courier Life newspaper, the project, whose funding was secured by City Councilman Vincent Gentile, involves construction of a "secure synthetic multi-use field consisting of new dugouts, new accessible entrances, six new handicap-accessible drinking fountains and new synthetic turf" and is scheduled to begin this Fall. After completion, the Dust Bowl area will be off-limits to the public, and only be open to authorized sports teams supplied with keys.

While advocates for the project have claimed that steps will be taken to protect the wild parrots during construction, it is highly troubling that synthetic turf will now replace what has been a natural environment of sand and turf, upon which wild birds, including the parrots, regularly forage upon. Synthetic turf is made from recycled rubber tires, and physicians have already raised concerns that it becomes toxic under certain conditions. It cannot be known what long-term effects this will have on the local fauna, or, for that matter, the human population. Losing open access to the Dust Bowl, one of Brooklyn's last genuine "sand lot" fields, is also a concern. Why must humanity always insist on replacing something natural and wild with something artificial and sterile?