12 comments on “The Pros and Cons of Feeding and Keeping Wild Birds

  1. I’d like to use one of your photos of a Brahminy Kite for a poem that I am writing. I will be publishing the poem (at some stage – not sure when). It is from Raptors of Broome – Part 4 Birding Around Broome WA page. (First Image). Is this okay if I do this and give a link to your blog as acknowlegement?

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    • Thanks Kerry, you are welcome to use my photos on the terms you suggested, and thank you for asking, I appreciate it when people do this, it speaks heaps about the ethical quality of one’s character. I love hearing from people who use my photos in various publications, and acknowledge my website. I love poetry and was a performing poet in my early years, but not for many years. It is a beautiful creative form of expression. All the best in your niche of expression.

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  2. Lovely photos, Ashley. I, too, feel sad for caged or shackled birds and all animals as well. It is most understanding if they are rescued to save from extinction and/or in recovery so as to keep them from further injuring themselves and have a chance to gain their health back for releasement. Keep up the wonderful posts! 🙂

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    • Thanks Donna, I get sad seeing birds cooped up in cages, trying to fly. They were made to fly free, and that is the best way to enjoy them. The challenge of pursuit and observation in the wild is what makes birding such an exciting recreation.

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  3. Beautiful post, wonderful videos and pictures. We only have rescued raptors etc in some parks, birds who cannot survive in the wild due to a permanent injury or disorder. People can see them where they live, an school children come to study them but I have not seen any shows around here.

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    • Thanks Tiny, It is wonderful that people care so much to capture and care for injured birds. I remember the great posts you showed in the past of the centre near you that does this. We have similar places, especially for our poor Koalas which suffer from car injury, but more so from Chlamydia of the eye.
      Enjoy your week my friend, you are always in our prayers!

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  4. Very interesting post Ashley, I also have opinions about the feeding and keeping wild birds captive. Not so about feeding the urban birds (backyard birds) because humans have taken their habitat by building cities. Thank you. 🙂

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  5. It is a tough question, on the one hand the purist in me is quite outraged. But the pragmatist also has a voice, and while I may enjoy the opportunity experience these wonderful creatures in the wild, I realise that others will never have that chance. Yet here in an area where the birds are treated well, are able to show people their beauty and skill, and to be in someways ‘part of the family’, it certainly has a lot going for it.
    I’ve had a number of opportunities to work with native birds in the wild, both raptors and small birds and on a number of occasions the birds have done far more than tolerate my presence. Often flying in when I enter the area. Very humbling. My local blackbird who pops his head over the fence from time to time, provides a morning and evening chorus for my enjoyment, may never, and so far as I can tell doesn’t intend to take my friendship into his family circle. But none the less, I can build a fine line with him.
    Magpies, and many of the parrots seem to offer the same interaction.

    I was quite annoyed a few weeks back when I saw that the US gov had offered a bounty for bringing in elephant parts to the US. Presumably trophy heads, ivory etc. The thing that got me was the ‘money collected’ was destined so they had the audacity to declare, to be used for ‘conservation purposes’.
    Let me see we shoot them to conserve them.

    Draws breath, sits down, and stops

    Lovely shots and great to hear the voice of handler speak so eloquently about the Kite.

    Peace

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    • Thanks so much David for sharing, yes there are many interpretations as to what is true conservation, and I guess that is my point, when it is truly for the good of the bird’s longevity and not personal gain, we are starting to be a true conservationist rather then controversialist. It is a wonderful humbling experience to have the trust of these wild birds as you mentioned, and interact with them on those special occasions that are a very special delight.

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  6. Quite a controversial topic you’ve chosen there Ashley! Keeping rescued wild animals is a double edged sword. On one hand, they are given a second chance at life and provided love and care from a keeper as well as help educate people and raise important funds for conservation. While on the other hand, you can’t help feeling sad for the animal as they are not truly free and wild and living the life they were meant to. And thanks for the mention in your post! 🙂 Look out for a future post from me about feeding wildlife – great minds think alike! 😀

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    • Thanks Sue, yes it is controversial, and challenges us to think of the aspects of what is true conservation, and it does vary according to the need a wild creature has at any given time. Is it in the best interests of the bird or animal to feed or capture it for a time or to release it to the wild, and abstain from attracting it with the offer of food on a regular basis so that it becomes dependent so that it looses the urge to hunt for itself and have a balanced diet? I will be looking forward to your contribution Sue in your future post.

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