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Watch Seymours Feathers Grow

Hey Birdbrain! September 2004

Itís been a very hot summer down here in the Florida Keys. Itís been hot for me in more ways than one. Iíve spent a week of this summer visiting my daughter, who is a senior at the Ringling School of Art and Design. Sheís a wonderful artist and photographer and going to visit and stay
at her apartment brought me back to my own college days and the fun it was to always have friends at the ready to be with you (right next door or down the hall). I have a great gal who takes care of my birds while Iím gone (which I certainly am not very often!). Sheís a vet tech at
our local clinic who handles my macaws as well as she handles the conure and it makes it very easy for me to leave my babies in her capable hands, except for the emotional part.

I had a terrible night when my husband had an asthma attack that tried to kill him. I gave him CPR while I waited for the ambulance and it took them a while to get him back to Earth. I am lucky to live in a place where the EMTís are so wonderful and caring. My husband was in the
hospital for a while and heís doing great now.

Many of you know that we also have a gift shop and we traveled to Atlanta to the GiftMart and have lots of new and exciting things in the shop, but it was also another time away from the birds. Summer is a travel time for lots of us and having someone who cares for your birds is a crucial thing to being able to take those small jaunts.

We also had three hurricane scares which made me get my evacuation plan spruced up. I have bought a van now so that I can take the birds anywhere and have enough room for all of them.

Summer is over, the kids are already back at school. So, the weather will get cooler and things can get back to normal. Weíre looking forward to a great year for the Mission.


Iíd like to send out a heartfelt welcome to our newest members, Mary Wicoff of Danville, Illinois, who sent me some beautiful photos of herself and her little double yellowheaded amazon, Abigail. The photos will go on our growing tree of members that will be placed in our sanctuary lobby when the time comes. Also Wendy Webber of Houston and Cissy Van Stone of Ft. Lauderdale, who also rescues parrots and works hard to help them all.

Weíre working on a possibility here in Islamorada that would be exciting, thrilling even, if it could happen. Thereís a piece of property thatís about an acre that is scheduled to become a passive
park. I am going before the Islamorada Commissioners to see if we could become part of that passive park with a huge aviary and an educational center. Being here in the Keys allows me to educate people from all over the world who come here to visit. This would be such a beautiful sanctuary for the lucky birds who would be allowed to live out their 60-90 year life span there. I know it would be a fabulous place for visitors and locals alike to observe the parrots flying,
bathing, eating, and playing in the treed aviary. We would also continue our daily educational parrot show and help those with problems with their parrots. Iím hoping to convince the commissioners that this would be a great addition to the already wonderful Florida Keys. Keep
your fingers crossed for us, and if your inclined to send up prayers, these parrots need them!

This meeting will be October 6th at 6 p.m. - ANYONE who could possibly attend and lend their support will be greatly appreciated. If you have any interest or could possibly attend, please email me and I'll give you more details. THANKS!


The birds we already have are doing great. If you check out our website, you know that most of the birds Iíve taken in, came to me with very little in the way of feathers due to plucking them out. Well, working with 10 birds takes a lot of time, but it certainly has become rewarding to see these birds get their feathers. Little Gabriella, the Umbrella Cockatoo has got so many feathers covering her crop now that she reminds me of a nun with the white bib in the front. Seymour gets
more pink as the days go by. Garth, the African Grey is adorable with pin feathers everywhere and Turbo, the B&G, is starting to grow them around his wings.

Nandi (changed from Mandi), the little feral Nanday Conure who came to us unconscious after being hit by a car is having a very exciting life. Iíve allowed her wings to grow in and she flies all over the neighborhood. She hangs out in the trees around my home or in the aviary with the other birds. She gets along with the other birds amazingly. She actually sleeps touching Turbo, the B&G and theyíve become great buds. Nandi came to us as a flying parrot and I felt that clipping her wings would be emotionally harmful to her. I did clip her wings when she was hurt so there would be no pressure on the hurt wing from her trying to fly, but then let them grow out. Contrary to what many people think, a bird that is allowed to fly will still be tame. When I am outside with the other birds, preening and just ďbeingĒ together, Nandi will fly down and spend the entire time on my shoulder getting head scratches along with the other birds.

Nandi has been with me for a year now and it is my opinion that she is the happiest of all the birds I have because she has some independence and is never in a cage of any sort. My goal is to have
no cages whatsoever in the bird room, just trees that they can roost in and chew up.

Some of you may have seen this interesting little tidbit:
A diary written by a woman named Fantova, a girlfriend of Einstein was found. While Einstein also talked about the travails of his continuing work in physics, most of Johanna Fantova's diary recalls his views on world politics and his personal life. The diary also recounts how, on his 75th birthday, Einstein received a parrot as gift. After deciding the bird was depressed, Einstein tried alter its mood by telling it bad jokes.

Iím sure the jokes didnít help, but I thought it was very interesting for him to think the bird was depressed. Iíve seen many caged birds that I would classify as depressed and Iím not close to an Einstein!

FROM THE ST. PETERSBURG TIMES: Barking, oinking, squawking - it's all noise to the County Commission.

So if the county's nuisance law covers dogs and potbellied pigs, commissioners decided, it also should apply to birds.

Under a revised ordinance approved Tuesday evening, bird owners now can be cited - just like the owners of dogs and potbellied pigs - for having excessively noisy pets. Such noise can include constant cawing that lasts more than 10 minutes, or frequent screeching between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. If a court determines someone's birds constitute a nuisance, the judge can reduce the number or type of birds allowed in that person's home.

"I don't see a difference between a bark and a shriek," Commissioner Steve Simon said. "Both can be intrusive."

I'd say we're going to see more counties adopting ordinances like this.


Iím planning a bird behavior seminar for next May. This will be a seminar on how to have a happier bird. I will bring my birds to demonstrate the ways to teach your bird just about anything.
Remember, youíre dealing with an animal that has the thinking ability of a five year old child. Think about little Alex, the African Grey; Dr. Pepperberg is teaching him to read now! I am trying to find a place to hold the seminar in Miami, hopefully close to I-95 so it will be easy to
reach for those coming from other parts of Florida. If you think youíll be interested in this three hour seminar, please let me know. The fee will be $35 per person, with a discount for a second member of the family. For more info you can contact me at

Thanks again for taking time to read this, I certainly appreciate all of your support. I hope you and yours had a great summer, kiss those birdies for me! Please help the cousins of your birds who have become neglected and abused. We can all become teachers at any time to those naive people who think having a parrot is easy and ďcool.Ē The lives of these wonderful animals are being wasted in cages for the most part. Those of us who love our birds, must love all the birds and help them by making people understand what a tremendous commitment parrots are and how terrible it is for these intelligent, emotional animals to spend their lives in cages.

Until next time, kiss those birdies for me! I'll keep on working on making a sanctuary for all of them. Thanks again for your support!

Birdie love (the most intense kind of all) to you!

Jenifer Dermer
Founder and Executive Director
World Parrot Mission, Inc.
A non-profit 501(c)(3) Corporation.
99150 Overseas Highway, Key Largo, Fl 33037 Ph: 305-453-1800
"Helping in the fight for parrots worldwide."

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