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Post: Connecticut'sl Monk Parakeets need our help.

Posted by Mickie on 11/19/05

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    Hi Friends,

    The following is an article that appeared on our local
    newspaper. Connecticut has started to kill our Quakers.
    I am outraged and sad that this is happenig right in front
    of our eyes. These poor birds are not protected by any law
    and I feel we are their only voice. I have written a letter
    to the newspaper and I'm hoping that they would let us
    convey our feelings about this inhumane action. A couple of
    friends and myself are trying to put together a video of our
    Quakers talking and interacting with us humans to exalt
    their intelligence and emotions. I'm begging our bird
    community to help me on this. If you have video clips or
    movies of your Quakers talking, singing and dancing or doing
    any of all the wonderful things they do, please share them
    with me. We need to bring our point across through the news
    media to help our feathered friends.
    If I sat through this and did nothing I would feel awful for
    the rest of my life. I owe it to my Willow.
    Thanks so much, hugs

    Article created: 11/17/2005 04:23:23 AM

    Pole-dwelling birds facing wrath of UI

    The United Illuminating Co., with support from federal and
    state officials, including the Connecticut Audubon Society,
    has begun an eradication program to destroy monk parakeet
    nests and kill off entire bird colonies.

    A spokeswoman for the U.S. Department of Agriculture said
    Wednesday that at least 47 of the large, bright-green
    tropical birds were humanely killed this week in a procedure
    that exposes them to large amounts of carbon dioxide.

    Priscilla Feral, president of the Norwalk-based Friends of
    Animals, called it the sanctioned murder of intelligent
    birds that is being subsidized by taxpayers and customers of
    the utility.

    "They belong to the planet, not the corporation," Feral
    said. "This is a draconian measure and I'm going to raise hell."

    The $125,000 program, targeting more than 100 stick nests in
    utility poles, began in West Haven this week and will expand
    to Milford, Stratford, Bridgeport and beyond, UI officials said.

    The gregarious cowled birds, which have colonized much of
    the Connecticut coast over the last 30 years, are being
    captured at night with nets by specially trained UI crews
    and turned over to U.S. Department of Agriculture personnel.

    The USDA officials euthanize most of the birds and use
    others for research, according to Al Carbone, spokesman for
    UI, who stressed that bird nests in utility poles have
    contributed to at least two fires, including one last summer.

    Corey Slavitt, a public affairs spokeswoman with the USDA's
    animal and plant health inspection service in Washington,
    confirmed that UI workers are giving the animals to the USDA.

    "The reason it's being done at night is because that's when
    adult populations congregate at their roosts," Slavitt said.
    He added that the birds are actually parrots (Myiopsitta
    monachus) native to the jungles of South America who have
    naturalized themselves. They are not native to this area.

    Indeed, Dennis Schain, communications director for the state
    Department of Environmental Protection, said that the birds
    have been declared an invasive species with potential
    detrimental effects on the environment.

    "The DEP is, of course, in the business of protecting
    wildlife and the state's natural resources," Schain said.
    "In this case, however, the monk parakeet is an invasive
    species; it is not protected under any federal or state
    laws, and nests on utility poles are creating a fire hazard
    and a threat to reliable electrical service.

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  • Connecticut'sl Monk Parakeets need our help., 11/19/05, by Mickie.