Wednesday, June 15, 2016

600 Parrots in need - Coombs, British Columbia

For immediate release

Coombs parrot refuge urgently needs public’s help

June 14, 2016 - British Columbia: Work has begun to rescue, adopt out and provide care for more than 600 parrots at the World Parrot Refuge in Coombs in the wake of the death of refuge founder Wendy Huntbatch, but those stepping up to address the critical problem urgently need the public’s support.

The refuge was founded by Huntbatch as a place to shelter pet parrots and former breeding stock that had been abandoned or given up by their owners. Huntbatch noted frequently over the years that she was strongly opposed to the importation of parrots into Canada, but felt a responsibility for the long-living birds that so frequently outlive their owners’ interest in them.

The society that was under the leadership of Huntbatch has struggled to manage the Coombs refuge
since her death in February. As a result, many of the birds living there have seen a decline in their health and quality of life, despite the best efforts of a dedicated and caring staff. Funding has dried up and a small amount of backup savings has now been used up.

The worst of the problems have been addressed now that Greyhaven Exotic Bird Sanctuary, a Vancouver-based parrot rescue group, stepped up to help. But the need continues for food, cages and other badly needed equipment – a system to purify contaminated well water, for instance

Steps have been taken to bring a major rat infestation under control, and work is underway to repair infrastructure and correct deficiencies identified in a recent BC SPCA report. The next step will be to attempt to reunite birds with past human families, and then to place others with suitable adoptive families. A few that are members of highly endangered species of parrots will hopefully be placed in a captive management program that will preserve genetic diversity.

“We’re doing what we can to address the most pressing problems, but many of the larger birds at the refuge have anxiety and self-mutilation issues that will make it hard to find homes for them,” says John Creviston, the interim manager now working with the Greyhaven board of directors to find a solution. 

“Many of these highly intelligent animals could face euthanasia if the right supports can’t be found.”
How can you help? We need parrot and smaller bird cages, food such as parrot pellets, seed and nuts, and fruit and vegetables. We also need help with water purification, and we need welding gauntlets, work gloves, nets, and most importantly, cash to aide in the immediate crisis. Greyhaven has been exhausting its own reserves in order to cover immediate costs such as staffing but cannot do this much longer. These hard-earned funds were partly assembled in an effort to secure a facility in the lower mainland to house the birds already in their care but might also house some of these birds as well as others in future. We also need former owners that would like to reunite with their birds to come forward. This situation is urgent! To donate see our Facebook page: WPR Community Support Central or contact the interim manager.

For more information:
John Creviston, refuge interim manager
Greyhaven Exotic Bird Sanctuary

Room for One More
 Do you have room in your home and heart for one more – just one more? One more parrot, that is. You may be aware that the World Parrot Refuge on Vancouver Island has been in disarray since Wendy Huntbatch passed away this winter, and things are rough for the 400-odd birds living there. There are big parrots, small parrots, healthy parrots, some with medical issues, young parrots, old parrots, perfect parrots, and some not-so- perfect. Some are very social, while others do not enjoy the company of humans, and may never do so. But all of them need, and deserve, our love and care.
This is where you come in, and you, and you, etc. If each of us could make room for just one more we’d solve the problem. Interested? If so, please contact Greyhaven. We will do an assessment of each applicant and will ensure that the bird you choose has been cleared by an avian veterinarian.

Just one more. You have the power to change a life.

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