Female. Blue and gold macaw (Ara ararauna)
Rescued 3 years ago by a sanctuary in Florida. Her owners were selling their house and going to live in an RV and travel.
The owner said that BJ had previously been owned by a man in a neighboring city and he had three Macaws and two of them beat up on BJ all the time and she plucked herself naked. They also broke one of her wings and the owner never sought veterinarian care for it. The man would beat on her cage with a broom to get the macaws to be quiet. The sanctuary placed her with a friend and when that friend died recently a sanctuary in Washington was called to take BJ in.
Male. Citron cockatoo. (Cacatua sulphurea citrinocristata)
Age: early 20's.
Owned and loved by a man who was a manic depressant.
The owner finally decided the bird needed more than he could manage and gave it to the sanctuary.
Female. Green-winged Macaw (Ara chloropterus)
Arrived to the sancturay in 2011 when her owner did not want to pay for vet care. They were buying a new house and said that Elizabeth needed medical treatment and they would rather have her euthanized than pay for her care. The sanctuary took her in and changed her diet as well as gave her physical therapy for a previously broken leg. She thrived! She is definitely a favorite with the volunteers since she goes to everyone for loving.
Female. Moluccan Cockatoo (Cacatua moluccensis)
Arrived at the sanctuary in 2009 after her owner passed away and no one in the family wanted her. 2 months after she arrived, she started spewing blood out of her mouth and nose. The veterinarian discovered high blood pressure, high cholesterol, a heart murmur and a small piece of metal stuck in her gizzard. They got Chicky’s medical situation under control and she’s been great ever since.
Sadly, Chicky passed away 4 days after we photographed her.
Male. Yellow crown amazon (Amazona ochrocephala)
Funny little fellow. Love to hang upside down. Arrived at the sanctuary after his owner died. He is doing great so far at the new home.
Male. Philippine Red Vented cockatoo (cacatua haematuropygia)
Owner passed away. Arrived at the sanctuary with several tumors which have turned out to be benign. One wing is frozen and the other was broken but healed without obvious medical intervention.
Male. African Gray (congo) (Psittacus erithacus)
Arrived to the sanctuary in 2014 from California. He was in a flock environment but his flock was given away to someone else so Bubba started plucking himself more. His owner, a veterinarian, sent Bubba to the sanctuary.
Female. Umbrella Cockatoo (Cacatua Alba)
An outstanding screamer, appears to be somewhat bipolar, and shows some signs of having been abused sometime in her life. Apparently unbeknownst to the first rescue, the owners had taken Gandy Roo to one vet who prescribed some type of psychotropic drug for her incessant screaming. When that didn’t work, they took her to another vet who prescribed a different psychotropic drug, unaware that a first vet had already done this. The owners then used the two drugs together in an effort to get this bird’s screaming under control and what happened instead is that they caused her some brain damage that now leaves her unpredictable, hence the bipolar like behavior. Oh, and she’s still an outstanding screamer.
Male. African Gray (timneh) (Psittacus timneh)
Was dropped off at the sanctuary with three other birds in 2013. Is doing fine at the new home.
Female. Moluccan Cockatoo (Cacatua moluccensis)
Her first owners loved her dearly but clearly didn't know about the needs of a cockatoo. They raised her to be a surrogate child. She wasn't caged. She was “worn”. They raised her on their shoulders, shared meals with her, she slept on their head board at night. At some point, that family fell on hard times. We were told that Buddha had to be put in a cage so that they could go out looking for work and Buddha went a little crazy at that time. She didn't understand cage bars or seeds or pellets. She didn't understand any of cage life. So she began screaming. Eventually that got her nowhere so she turned to obsessive feather preening. This became plucking and the plucking led to mutilation. The rescuer had a Moluccan cockatoo of her own and happened to cross paths with this family. She agreed to pay them some money for Buddha and get her the veterinary care they could not afford. Things were ok for a while until the rescuer’s husband served her with divorce papers one day and she had very little time to find a new place to live. This lady ended up taking Buddha and her own bird to a sanctuary. This was back in 2002. She wears a collar to avoid mutilation and plucking. She gets the collar off regularly for preening etc but we cannot leave it off or she eats herself.
Male. Hyacinth macaw (Anodorhynchus hyacinthinus)
Stays at the sanctuary on and off to give his owner some time off as he is a hand full.
Male. Umbrella cockatoo (cacatua alba)
Age: late 20's
Sent to a sanctuary by a lady who bought him in Southern California while she was living in her motorhome to keep her company. She said he was friendly but unpredictable in biting and he always bit her when she put him back in his cage. After having x-rays done at the vet they discovered the cause for his “return to cage biting”. His back had been broken at sometime in his life and healed apparently on its own. The vet’s best guess based on the way it healed, this bird was probably hit with an object such as a rod or stick.
Now days he does bite, but the incidents are random and we cannot tell if they are malicious or a loss of balance that causes it.
CHLOE & MERLOT
Females. Gold and blue macaws (Ara ararauna)
They both came from a sanctuary in Portland, Oregon. Both severely plucked with blown air sacs and cataracts. They go everywhere together.
Female. Goffin cockatoo (Cacatua goffiniana)
Owners got a divorce and none of them wanted to keep her. So they gave her away to a sanctuary.
She likes to dance.
Male. Buffon macaw (Ara ambiguus)
He was used in breeding but was unsuccessful in that endeavor. He was passed from breeder to breeder for a few years until his last breeder had to downsize and moved to a house where she put Mr. Pickles in a room all by himself and he started to pluck. So the breeder decided to sell him to a private party. He was sold to the current owner who loved him but needed to re-home him to the sanctuary.
Female. Moluccan cockatoo (Cacatua moluccensis)
Simba arrived at the sanctuary in 2001 from another rescue who was unable to successfully place her and her then companion because Simba was a major mutilator. This is different from plucking. She was pretty plucked as well. Mutilation is defined as physical damage to their own flesh. In her case, she had a large crater like wound in her chest, right across her keel bone. Upon examination by the local veterinarian, who also took x-rays, it was discovered that her keel bone had at one time been shattered beyond repair. And judging from the bone shards and calcification, never had any medical care. There was a lot of scar tissue too. And whenever it was particularly annoying or possible painful, Simba would gnaw on herself to try to alleviate the problem. Over the years, we've had to treat it surgically, topically and lately, with cold laser therapy. But today she is as healthy as she’s probably ever going to be. She’s happy and mostly healed up. She wears a lot of body armor but appears to be rather comfortable in general.
She was Chicky's best friend.
Female. Catalina macaw (hybrid)
Sunrise is a retired breeder that was not able to have successful hatchlings. All of her babies had major handicaps and would die soon after hatching or within the first year. She was being sent to two different sanctuaries. We are unsure of her age as she has not documentation. She does have splayed legs but is able to get around just fine!
Female. Goffin cockatoo (Cacatua goffiniana)
Purchased as a baby by a lady who ended up not being able to keep her. The sanctuary boarded her for 6 months prior to moving to a new location and the owner thought she'd be happiest at the sanctuary. She was adopted but for some reason she began to pluck and over pluck in the new home. The new home ran hundreds and hundreds of medical tests and could never find a reason for this. She was regretfully returned to the sanctuary.
We were able to capture only this one photograph of her before she jump from the perch and hurt her elbow. She was fine but we didn't want to stress her too much.
Female. African Gray (congo) (Psittacus erithacus)
Arrived at the sanctuary in 2010. Her owner had her since she hatched and lived in a small mobile home community now so neighbors were complaining about her noise. She wanted Kaylie to be free to fly and do what ever she wanted so she gave her to the sanctuary.
Male. Moluccan cockatoo (Cacatua moluccensis)
The oldest bird we photographed for this project.
Spent almost 20 years in a wildlife park and 20 more years at a sea life park and had a few in home caretakers before going to the sanctuary at age 60. We were only able to capture this one photograph cause he was getting anxious and didn't like the photoshoot.
oh! and he has a girlfriend.