Legisislative Rights for Parrots
Supporting People Who Support Parrots
COMMENTS TO BILLS
Thank you for your time reviewing our proposed bills. We have spoken to numerous rescues and bird owners, all who have different ways of caring for parrots. In order to create bills to take to legislation, we needed your input! Please read our bills and provide positive or negative comments. We need your voice!
1. Definitions to support birds in existing cruelty laws. (posted on this page)
2. A Standard of Care meeting the minimum needs of pet birds (click here for the page)
3. Cruelty laws written which can be adjusted to meet the needs of your state. (posted on this page)
4. Responses to comments made to our draft of the bills. (posting shortly)
WE NEED YOUR INVOLVEMENT! For those who have responded, we have made changes to our bills.
Comments to Our Proposed Bill Drafts
1. " I have never seen an issue with bird toenails being clipped too short"
Our organization thanks you for your comment. While you may have not seen this as an issue, other individuals have brought this to our attention. In the state of Utah as well as other states, people have complained about taking their birds to get their nails trimmed. The bird's feet were sore after a drastic toenail cut, and not allowing for comfortable or secure perching of their birds. While we value your input, the comment in the bill will remain as stated.
2. "Reading the bills states that feeding my pet bird seed is a form of neglect."
Our organization appreciates your review of the bill. Changes have been made to the bill to reflect a balanced diet for every species of bird. While finches and canaries are higher in seed consumption, parrots are not. Also, while a pellet diet may be important to birds, some facilities can provide all the nutrition a parrot needs from their chop mix. We value your comment and changes were made to the bill reflecting your comment.
3. " Education is important and a foremost concern for pet bird ownership"
Our organization thanks you for your response. While we stated a requirement for veterinarians to provide education to pet bird owners, we agree that additional educational material should be provided by pet stores, breeders, rescues and flippers. This will be added to the bill.
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4. "Blunting of a bird's beak is only done with poultry birds"
Our organization appreciates your comment. While you hear of only poultry birds' beaks being blunted, there are other states where groomers are now performing this procedure on parrots. Parrots bite with their mandible and maxilla portions of their beak. This procedure does not stop harmful biting to humans. This procedure has been brought to our attention as a "problem" and mutilating parrots' beaks. The bill will remain with the clause about preventing the blunting of beaks.
5. "Education is more important than pushing legislation"
We thank you for your comment. However, some of rescues that know proper care of birds, some do not meet their minimal needs. They continue to take in birds yet do not meet basic care. While many rescues are successful, many are not. The legislation is to help protect the welfare of the birds. With the comments we have received, we are working on adding exceptions to the bill.
6. "Cotton not a toxic toy"
Our organization appreciates your input. We agree that cotton toys are not "toxic" yet due to the inability for a bird to digest cotton, it remains a concern. Any toy with cotton can be ingested and can not only harm but kill a bird. However, with comments, we are striking cotton from the list of toxic items. This was initially included due to a cockatoo owner's bird digesting cotton. The bird was rushed to the vet and $2,000.00 later, luckily, the bird passed the cotton.
7. "Legislation isn't what's needed. Education is. Make it law that breeders and shops have to give accurate housing and care information, as well as accurate information regarding that species. Fix the problem at the core."
We appreciate your comment. We feel those who sell birds or call themselves a rescue (some flippers do this) but truly aren't are just selling/adopting birds out without education. We fully agree with your statement. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. We have a trainer who is going to put in some basic requirements into the bill to require all entitities who sell/ adopt out birds to educate the new owners and provide them resources.
8. "And there are thousands of parrots in homes where people have no education about them AND are not on the internet, and some don't care because the bird is alive, and they have no comparison to what is "right". I have dealt with plenty of people wanting or having a parrot and are clueless, and continue to do so. Same goes for other animals. Not sure what 'standard of care' really means...to some people it's a cage and food. Here in my state the animal organizations cannot do anything if there is shelter and some food (pertaining to farm animals). The burden will be on rescue shelters and foster homes is someone loses- have you taken into consideration where you will put the birds if they are confiscated?"
We thank you for your comment. We are working on that, where to place confiscated birds. We created an MOU template for Authorities and Rescues to put into place. We have also donated $2,200.00 to rescues and sanctuaries and are keeping an eye on where there is a gap between communications for a bird in need.
9. "Same with hand feeding babies. My seller trained me how to hand feed and didn't send him home until I showed I was ready. That should be required for all hand fed babies. I see so many 'how do I feed it' posts in groups because people are sent off without the education."
We appreciate your comment. We added that into our bill. I hope people read the bill proposal called Standard of Care, so we can make changes per public comments like we did due to your comment. We thank you.
10. "(v) providing fresh potable water and a varied diet meeting the needs of the species'; the commenter asks how this is defined and is not sure there is a definitive source of diet for each species.
In the Michigan House Bill 5063, they have defined food and water appropriate for that species. Because of your comment, we have taken action to use their written portion of the bill and revise our copy of the bills.
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11. " Change the word numerous to multiple in the Standard of Care 1(c)."
We have considered your comment and made the change in the Standard of Care bill to state "more than one bird" to ensure clarity in the meaning.
12. "Would you want to add perch space will be available for all birds in the cage? I discussed this with a manager at Petco because there were so many budgies in a cage some of them had to sit on the bottom or hand from the sides."
LRP appreciates your comment and have revised the bill to require multiple perches as well as the sizing of the cages for enough space for "more than one bird" kept in the same enclosure.
13. "Get feedback fro an avian vet as to cost for different species to run these tests, which tests are known for false positives and false negatives."
LRP appreciates your comment. Because different labs and different vets charge different prices, LRP feels this would not be helpful. We can tell you that Avian Biotech and other accredited labs can perform the tests for around $150.00. This is less expensive than annual vaccinations for cats or dogs. Also, as for false negatives and false positives, usually PBFD and PDD are known for false negatives unless the bird is shedding the virus at that time. We are aware there are false negatives and positives, however, requiring testing will help identify more affected birds than by not requiring any testing.
14. "3(1) mentions overbreeding. This needs a definition."
We agree that the word "overbreeding" needs a definition. In order to clarify breeding standards in our draft bill, we have re-written the section to remove the word "overbreeding". We have contacted breeders to ask what is excessive and what is not, and we have written the number of times a bird may be bred in a year into the draft based on breeders' expertise.
If you would like a copy of the bills in a document format, please email us and we will send you the most recent draft