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#102290 - 12/16/03 09:24 PM Re: Should they be sold?  
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Alleaa Offline
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Ok... you tell me: What would you prefer? For the species to (possibly) become extinct, or to torture the birds in cages all their lives? I'll take a quick death to slow torture any day.
Jerry I wasn't going to ask this for fear of well the wave that may start ... but I have to ask.
You really in your heart think that people whom have toos including yourself that are in cages (mine mostly to sleep) that are fed very well, have great vet care and are taking care of with love, and caring are slowly bring tortured?

#102291 - 12/16/03 10:06 PM Re: Should they be sold?  
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You really in your heart think that people whom have toos including yourself that are in cages (mine mostly to sleep) that are fed very well, have great vet care and are taking care of with love, and caring are slowly bring tortured?
IMHO, when you take a flock/herd animal and remove them from what nature intended, yes it is torture. Prisoners in max security are miserable. Prisoners in a "white collar" facility are not as miserable but they are STILL prisoners and so are our birds. so the bad homes out there are like the max. security prisons. The good homes are like the white collar prisons but they are STILL prisons. Prison is not how people were meant to live and cages were not meant to be how a bird should live ... at least the people did something to deserve their prison. JMHO.

#102292 - 12/17/03 12:09 AM Re: Should they be sold?  

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But they're as happy as we can make them under the circumstances. Well at least some of us are really trying. The way you put it makes it sound as though we shouldn't care for them in the first place, and just let them go. Problem is, there is no where to go and the only people who care seem to be us bird brains.

There has to be something we can do to improve our situation. Could we send in requests for a law stating that people must be educated and liscensed before owning a too?

#102293 - 12/17/03 12:23 AM Re: Should they be sold?  
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The way you put it makes it sound as though we shouldn't care for them in the first place, and just let them go.
NEVER would I even insinuate that people should just let them go and I resent that statement. I was replying to the question of "even under the best home circumstances is it still a form of torture" and in my opinion, yes it is because it IS NOT HOW NATURE INTENDED them to be. All one can do is make the best of a bad situation as many of us try to do for our birds. EVERYONE here knows our birds can not be returned to the wild. If I thought that we should "all let them go" I #1 would not have birds in my care and #2 would not be a mod on this board spending my time trying to help others w/ their questions or offering suggestions to make life better for the captive birds in our care. Thank you.

#102294 - 12/17/03 12:41 AM Re: Should they be sold?  
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Sunny said exactly what I have said over the years, comparing these birds to prison inmates. Can both survive confinement? Usually, yes. But both man and cockatoo sometime commit suicide due to this confinement. Can both be happy now and then? Sure. Would both PREFER to be free, with all the things that go along with freedom? YOU BET THEY WOULD! And BOTH will often suffer the consequences of some mental changes for being confined!

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But they're as happy as we can make them under the circumstances.
That's no justification for the real misery we put them through over their long lives. And it's nothing.. absolutely NOTHING compared to what they'd feel flying free. So in review, being "happy as we can make them" is a very poor substitute for what they were placed on earth for. I don't know how many time I have to repeat this line: "Turn them loose and if they come back.. you can keep them with a clear conscience." However, if they fly away, never to be seen again... this is PROOF that they'd rather be free than be with you.

The animals will tell you all you need to know about what they prefer. I don't need to tell you what you can plainly see.

( PS.. the above paragraph was NOT to be taken literally of course)

#102295 - 12/17/03 01:12 AM Re: Should they be sold?  
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I know deep in my heart that were I to take any of my birds outside and let them go, they would fly away. Its that simple. I don't think any of them would even look back, well maybe my Quaker, he thinks I'm his mate so he might miss me and try to come home...but, maybe thats only wishful thinking on my part...But I also know that I can't let them go free because they are not in their natural environment and they wouldn't survive. So I don't do it. I love them, and they love me..thats also something I know deep in my heart. But everytime I see them looking up at the birds flying by when they're out on my porch (in their cages of course), I feel guilty..for keeping them in cages, and for being selfish enough to be glad that I CANT let them go, because I would miss them horribly.

#102296 - 12/17/03 01:29 AM Re: Should they be sold?  

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Please don't get me wrong on this. I'm not saying the best we can to do is good for them. And I'm also not saying that they'd prefer to stay over leave and be free. But there is NO WHERE to go and we can't do a d*mn thing about it! (Excuse that.)

Just like you I'd like to see all parrots in the wild where they truly belong. You know, where'd they be happy and able to do what they were meant to do.

But Jerry, don't you even feel a little good that it's you taking care of these birds and not some lunatic who doesn't care? Or what if your birds fate (if he was born in the wild) was to be captured and imported anyway?

I feel guilty about having any bird, but..where else are they to go..and what else can I do?

#102297 - 12/17/03 01:32 AM Re: Should they be sold?  
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Thank you for those honest heartfelt answers. I appreciate it more than you know.

#102298 - 12/17/03 01:52 AM Re: Should they be sold?  
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I'm a little late in this discussion, but I may as well jump in anyway smile

Do I believe U2's, M2's, and other 'common' cockatoos should be bred? No. There are more than enough neurotic, depressed, homeless cockatoos out there because of how selfish we humans are. There are few birds I AM for breeding, with the big exception of very rare and quickly diminishing species of parrots.

I think everyone is more or less at a loss for ideas that could realisticly help these beautiful animals anytime soon. Like Eva said, requiring permits and such could be done, but there are always loopholes people can use.

It dosen't sound like much, but education on what 'toos really are, may be the best way to go at this point. More and more often, i'm meeting other teenagers who are more accepting of the idea that parrots are more than pretty living room ornaments.

There will always be those few people that blow you away with their complete biased ignorance; the ones that no matter how much proof you offer will ALWAYS believe that animals, from mice to dogs, to tigers to birds, are nothing but emotionless pieces of DNA. Overall, however, young people seem to be more willing to learn about the intelligence, complexity, and wildness (did I just invent a word?) of parrots. If we continue to educate this--er--MY generation, we will more than likely have less backyard breeders when todays teenagers reach adulthood; and hopefuly, less impulse buyers. It's no quick fix of course, but this is really a "How do you eat an elephant?" situation.

I really agree with most of the people here. Cockatoos were born to do a few things; chew, scream, fly, forage, and reproduce. Humans were cruel enough to put an animal, no less wild than a lion, in cages not even comparable to the enviroment mother nature gave them. There have been many, many times Zeeba was sitting on my wrist, looked at me with his beautiful, black eyes, and whispered "I love you", and i'd just cry for a reason very few people outside the 'real' bird people would understand. I just wonder who in their right minds decided it would be a good idea to take an animal which was born to be free, and break it's spirit like this.

We can only hope that one day, cockatoos are back where they belong. If we're...well, if the 'toos are lucky, it will continue to get better, one generation at a time. While we won't live to see it, perhaps there will be a day where everyone knows how wrong it is to make these animals live the way they do now.

Katy

Oh, and an edited in note for patrick:

Take into account some of the times your bird is happiest. When he's screaming? Destroying a toy? Being preened?

This isn't because he likes the sound of his voice, or because that yellow monkey shaped piece of wood is beautiful, or because he just likes scritches. It's because times like those are when your bird is being the most 'bird like'. Like I said, birds were meant to scream, chew, fly, and reproduce. Your bird would be screaming all day, destroying trees, and be preened by his/her mate....multiply your birds happy moments by 30, and I reckon thats what life for him/her would be like in the wild. I think thats what Jerry meant by "making the most of a bad situation." They're just appreciating the few moments they get to do what they were meant to do smile

#102299 - 12/17/03 02:16 AM Re: Should they be sold?  
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AprilLuvToos Said:

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But Jerry, don't you even feel a little good that it's you taking care of these birds and not some lunatic who doesn't care? Or what if your birds fate (if he was born in the wild) was to be captured and imported anyway?

Look.. my point is NOT to make people feel guilty. (at least not those who really care for their birds). My point is to get across that nobody ...and I mean NOBODY is doing these birds any favors by removing them from the wild and caging them. (This includes domestically bred birds who are only a couple of generations removed from the wild).

My point is not to make anyone feel bad, but to make it plain that you shouldn't feel that it's good, "normal" or natural to confine these birds as though they are little more than Canaries. For this species in particular... we aren't doing any favors.

To Katy: Wonderfully said! cool

#102300 - 12/17/03 03:15 AM Re: Should they be sold?  

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In NO way is taking in a cockatoo to be a "pet" or even a friend normal. They're still confined, and not as happy as they should be, I know that. I just want to do something about it, and that something is too huge to even try to imagine.

And it really is very hard not to feel guilty, even when you put the rest of your life into helping this one bird who doesn't even deserve to be here in the first place. I know she'd rather be using her wings in the wilderness, but I'm doing my best.

Katy, I am also hearing many younger people say more than just "what a pretty bird, I want one." But there is still that huge percentage that still say it. I guess the best we can do STILL is educate. Sigh...

#102301 - 12/17/03 06:54 PM Re: Should they be sold?  
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Very well said Katy, but...

I still don't agree with "these birds are just making the best of a bad situation". Most of these Too's don't know anything of freedom and being "wild". When Pmo notices flying birds, I see wonder and curiousness in her, not sadness. When she is screeching and tearing things up I see a very happy bird and I donít in any way discourage that behavior. The only thing she canít do is fly, and she has never known flying except the dashes across the room that I do with her on my hand, although she loves this, I donít think she is particularly sad about not being able to fly free outside. I think that I feel more sadness for her than she does.

As for being 30 times happier in the wild, I wouldnít count on it, nature is a great and wondrous thing, but it is also very cruel, and in all actuality there are only three ways to die in nature, being eaten alive, or getting sick, and while dying a slow painful death, get eaten alive, or being killed because your either considered a pest or hunted for sport. Donít get me wrong, I love the fact that there are wild free roaming animals, but I also acknowledge the fact that some of these animals (if not abused or neglected), can be very loving companions to their owners and be very happy where theyíre at.

#102302 - 12/17/03 07:37 PM Re: Should they be sold?  
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Is ignorance bliss??? I don't think it is.

My M2 is ignorant about what it is to fly or to have freedom. He doesn't know how to gather his own food or how to live in nature. He's been in captivity his whole life.

He may be ignorant to what should be natural to him but he does know things...He knows how to pluck himself. He knows how to fear hands and be terrified of people. He knows how to be cage aggressive and threaten anyone who moves.

Granted, he is responding and becoming more "tame" since moving into our home, but happy? Sometimes I like to believe he is, but I really don't feel he is. I think if the truths known, he's pissy because he's pissed off at his lot in life. I'm just grateful that he doesn't want to bite me. Some "happy" birds sure know how to take a plug out of their "loved ones". Mine doesn't bite, but I wouldn't blame him if he wanted to.

#102303 - 12/17/03 07:46 PM Re: Should they be sold?  
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I hate zoos. I hate seeing those beautiful lions and tigers pacing the cage back and forth, back and forth. Some of them were born in captivity and have never known "freedom" either, but does that mean they're better off or happy where they are? I doubt it.

God gave birds wings for a reason. To fly. Every bird in a cage is being denied that freedom, whether they know it or not. I know.

I have birds and I love them. I think my birds are happy, as happy as they can be confined to a cage or a room. Would they rather be outside flying around? You bet they would. We as humans have such a huge ego, we like to think that WE are capable of making these animals happy and they don't need any more than we give them.

Of course we can't let them go free, they would be killed or die. But it still makes me sad that they will never enjoy the freedom that eagle has that I see flying over my house.
The only thing I can do is make sure that I never again buy a bird from a breeder or a pet store. No, I'm not going to stop the breeding of these birds, I'm realistic enough to realize that. But the one small thing I CAN do is to ONLY take in a neglected/abused or unwanted bird from now on and try to encourage others to do the same. People that buy birds from breeders or pet stores, aren't "bad" people, they are people just like me, that don't realize how many birds are lanquishing away in rescues, and shelter. I had no idea how serious the problem was when I was buying my birds. So how can I sit and judge others for doing the same thing I was doing?
All I can do is try to educate and inform these people the same way others educated me.

Thats why I'm here at mytoos.

#102304 - 12/17/03 10:41 PM Re: Should they be sold?  
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I love my birds very much, and I love my dogs very much. The difference lies here. My dogs have an excellent life with me. I provide everything they could possibly need, including the pack situation that is instinctual. They eat when food is needed, they run and run and run whenever they want, day or night in our large back yard, heck I even sleep with them, because that's what canines do in a pack situation. They want for little, and I would never consider finding them a new home.
Here's the difference. My cockatoos (u2 and m2) are like children to me. I cook for them more often then I cook for myself. I've built them indoor cages that are only 6.5ft. x 4.5ft x 6.5ft, and I understand that that is no where large enough. I can spend as much time as I want trying to justify them being in my care - "Oh, well they live a lot better than others" - and while that may help me sleep a little better at night, I know that what I do for them is nothing like mother nature can do for them. As fond as I am of them, and as much as I love them, if a better situation would come along for them, I would give them up in a heart beat. That is NOT to say I would give them up because I don't love them, it is truly because I do love them, that if I knew that they could have better, I would do it for them. If someone told me there was an inclosed aviary out there that covered acres upon acres, all fenced in, where they could fly freely, and eat as they pleased, and be well cared for in a FLOCK situation, I would be one of the first people lined up outside the door to get in. I know that as a captive prisoner, my birds are better off than many others out there, but I also know that I'm not the best thing for them. And once again, if something BETTER than their current situation came along, I would give them that instead. That is in fact the only reason I ever rescued these two. I read this whole site in and out three times and I knew... I KNEW I shouldn't have adopted these two, but compared to what life was like before, living with me has been much better for the two of them.

#102305 - 12/18/03 03:55 AM Re: Should they be sold?  
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Well Jerry what a huge can of worms. I really did enjoy seeing everyones varied opinions although I am exhausted from reading all of this. Still have the flu. Getting back to your original question should the large Toos be bred and sold (even if that means large chains like Petco Petsmart etc.) Definitely not but we cant do a dam* thing about it. The fact is there is money to be made and the food chain here is huge. From breeder to sale to sale again and cages, supplies, toys, vets, and everything else I am leaving out. The whole conundrum back and forth about whether they are happy as captives is just a moot point, isn't it?

The members of this forum are doing the best that they can and are far above the average man on the street with a captive bird.

I know you stated that you didn't want anyone to feel guilty but the result seems to be a lot of guilt showing up here.

I don't understand any of it. Speaking only for myself, I am proud of having adopted Gracie and I think she is as happy as she KNOWS. She has no idea about life in the wild. And she never will. I think that every member here who has spent the hours on education and sharing ideas and trying to provide the best home they can should feel proud also. Enough said from me.........

#102306 - 12/18/03 06:50 PM Re: Should they be sold?  
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This is the first time I have posted here, so take this as you will, but I have a U2 that was full flight for photos and he flew into the screen and both he and the screen landed on the deck. He flew into a tree and remained on my property for 5 days then flew away. On the tenth day missing, he was found sitting on the side of a main road in another town. The elderly walkers put him in a duffle bag and brought him to the vets. An employee ended up taking the bird home and I was not notified of his being found for over a month and a half. I went to identify him and found him to be in a good home, so I let them keep him. But when I left, the bird started screaming and wouldn't stop. 2 days later they called me to come get him. Now, the bird may have decided that he wanted to be with me over them, but I guarantee you that the only reason he came out of the trees and allowed himself to be recaptured was hunger. Anyone who thinks this bird came down because he had some burning desire to be in a cage in my home instead of free, is deluding themselves. Hunger and hunger alone brought him down. The only decision he made was whether he wanted to live in thier house or mine. So, I don't see the 'Set them free' theory as applicable when dealing with birds. But of course, this is only my opinion and may differ from your opinion.

#102307 - 12/18/03 10:17 PM Re: Should they be sold?  

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I have to say that I am 100% against the breeding and selling of these birds.

However, I do agree with what Paul H said. Most of our birds have been bred in captivity, have never been free and never could survive if set free in their natural habitat. We have to do the best we can for our birds in our care. It takes a hell of a lot of work, sacrifice and compromise to give our too's the life they deserve...the life that was chosen for them by those who breed or those who have captured them in the wild.

It's sad to say that there may never be laws in the future to limit or stop the breeding of these creatures. There also may never be laws limiting the ownership of cockatoos. The laws that will be written would most likely touch upon issues such as not selling unweaned babies, having proper cage sizes etc. The basics so to speak. It IS disappointing no doubt, but it's a long, frustrating haul if real changes and protections were actually passed. Who really knows. I'm working on legislation now for NH, similar to CA's recently passed law and I highly doubt it will pass. Hours upon hours of work can go into something like this and it can be shut down in matter of minutes when it comes down to vote.

All that can be done now is to educate people, not support the breeders with buying birds or supplies from them and help the reputable rescues out there.

Would my two umbrellas be happier if born into the wild? Of course they would be!! It's where they were meant to be. Do I know if they are happy? I sure hope so. I try and provide everything I can for them, from allowing them to be free-flighted, having large outdoor flights, very little in cage time, toys, attention...they have it. IF any of mine were wild caught...I would feel extremely guilty that they were plucked out of the wild and put into a cage. But I have to say that I know my birds ARE happy because of the life I provide for them.

Just my 2 cents.

#102308 - 12/19/03 02:21 AM Re: Should they be sold?  
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Patrick M said:

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Most of these Too's don't know anything of freedom and being "wild".
WHOA!!!!! THIS is exactly the mentality that we HAVE to convince people is wrong wrong wrong!!

Do you think just because a bird has never flown that he doesn't long for it?? Doesn't have a clue as to what its about?? Couldnt fly??

Do you think just because a bird has never met it's mate that he doesn't long for one??? Do you think because a bird has never bred that he doesnt want to?? Doesnt know HOW to??

Do you not understand that these are WILD animals born with DNA that forces them to ATTEMPT to do exactly what nature fully intended.. even though they've never been in the wild??

Just because they HAVENT done these things doesn't mean that they have no idea of what they're MISSING!!! They DO know! And that's EXACTLY why they have so much problem with captivity!!

Until you all understand this very simple logic.. we'll never get anywhere. eek

#102309 - 12/19/03 04:20 AM Re: Should they be sold?  

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Let me ask you this Jerry: If it's so simple, then how come some of us aren't understanding?

Yes, we know that birds know how to do it even though they haven't been raised in the wild or given enough space to attempt it. It's instinct, they're born to do it. Just like humans are born to walk, talk, and use their bodies and knowledge.

We're trying to understand. And we're doing are best to help birds that would in some cases have no chance at all. I know I (and probably a lot of other people on this board) take care of my baby very well. She is outside and active, and talks with other wild birds. She does outdoor activities with me like mountain biking and running. Her wings spread and she is having the greatest moment ever. We give them what we can, and that's all we can do.

We KNOW that they should be in the wild and free, able to live on their own and let their spirits soar. WE KNOW WE KNOW! Yes, we read what you say. But HOW are we supposed to do that? Talking about it isn't working is it? The trees are still cut down and birds are still being illigally imported, so now what?

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