"Life's most persistent and urgent question is, what are you doing for others?"
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
2/7/2018

Dear ARC Supporters,

  
Now that the busy holiday time is over, I wanted to write to you and let you know what’s been going on with the Avian Rehabilitation Center over the past several months.
 
First, the Board of Directors and staff of Avian Rehabilitation Center want to thank you, our supporters, for all you’ve done for our Resident and Adoptable Parrot Flocks since we opened our doors after obtaining our 501(c)3 status in May 2017.
 
Our GlobalGiving Year-End Fundraising Campaign was an enormous success.  We were most fortunate to gain a significant number of new donors and funding over the required amount to secure us a permanent membership on the GlobalGiving team.  An important benefit we have gained from our GG membership is TEXT-TO-GIVE $10.  By simply texting GIVE 30226 to 80100, you can quickly and easily give $10 to ARC!

Pssst! You've got mail!

Avian Rehabilitation Center is a completely transparent organization.  In February 2018, we will begin posting all of our financials on our website, as well as on our GuideStar page, https://www.guidestar.org/profile/82-1505613 .  Current financials will also be available as part of our next quarterly GlobalGiving report at https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/help-build-the-arc-avian-rehabilitation-center/ .   We want to be sure that you know where your donations are going.  We welcome your questions about our financial information, our facility and 5-year plan for growth, the programs with our parrots that we will be instituting this year, and any other questions you may have concerning our organization.  You may submit your questions to us via email at ARCcoDirector@AvianRehabilitationCenterUSA.org or through our Contact page on the ARC website.
 
We have already adopted out two of our companion parrots, with more in the works!  Coconut, a very sweet umbrella cockatoo, came to us from a couple who had had him for many, many years, and were no longer able to care for him, due to their age and health.  They had adopted him from a rescue that was not able to take him back, so Coco’s parents were forced to board him at their certified avian vet’s office until a rescue organization for him was found.  His vet, an ARC board member, contacted us, and Coconut was formally relinquished and went to stay with our Co-Director (me!) at the ARC South facility for some one-on-one attention and an attempt to distract him from continued re-opening of an old wound in his chest.  After only a brief period of acclimation to a life away from his home of so many years, he began to trust me, and he opened up and began communicating through both human speech and “cockatoo-ese.”  One of the staff at our vet’s office immediately fell in love with Coconut, and after taking several weeks to seriously consider what a lifetime with a cockatoo would entail, she decided to adopt him.  Coconut fell in love at first sight, and every time he saw her, during her visits to ARC to spend time with him and take our adoption class, he would raise his crest and do his little cockatoo dance, and then snuggle up in her arms and lower his head for a head-petting session.  It was a match made in heaven!  His new “mom” takes Coconut to work with her on occasion (where he hangs out in a room with negative air pressure, so as not to come in contact with any germs that may come in from sick animals), and he is loved by all of the staff there.  We have seen Coconut during our vet visits since then, and he is always happy to see us!  And, we are happy to report a significant healing of his wound.

  
Our second adoption was of Courtney, a Galah cockatoo who was turned in to the Dept. of Animal Services after she was taken in as a stray.  We have a partnership contract with DAS, and they contact us whenever they take in a cockatoo or macaw.  After her mandatory 5-day hold at DAS, we picked her up and brought her to her temporary home at ARC (after a complete exam and extensive lab work by our avian vet).  We immediately put Courtney on ARC’s regimen of daily fresh organic veg and home-grown sprouts, an appropriate amount and type of nuts, and Caitec pellets, a high-end baked pellet containing all of her necessary nutrients, in case any are missed as she forages through her salad and nuts.  She was given her nightly pellets in a foraging wheel, as are all of our parrots, to stimulate her intelligence and curiosity.  Courtney, as well as all of our other avian residents, was given frequent showers and outdoor aviary time in the sunshine and fresh air, with a chance to communicate with all of ARC’s other cockatoos and macaws (and the occasional African grey!).  Once she was well settled in, our experienced avian behaviorists spent time getting to know her and evaluating her for any behavioral problems that might require rehabilitation.  This sweet little girl, despite having been taken in as a stray, willingly stepped up for all of our staff and displayed no negative or problem behaviors!  We had 17 serious adoption inquiries on Courtney, and through our adoption procedures and evaluation processes, we narrowed the field down to two potential homes for her.  The Board of Directors voted, and approved her adoption to a veterinarian and her husband.  You should have seen Courtney during our home visit!  She immediately stepped up for both of them and then took ownership of a tabletop playstand, as well as the husband’s arm.  It was the perfect match for both parrot and humans.

​  
Gandalf, a Moluccan cockatoo, came to us from a horrible cruelty/hoarding situation, with several broken feathers from trying to move around in a cage that was too small, as well as a broken toe (most of the parrots from that same hoarder had toes that had been either broken or bitten off).  Very frightened of human contact at first, our experienced behaviorists have rehabbed him in just a few months, to the point where he is showing his true Moluccan desire for unlimited head scratching sessions, and is ready for adoption.  There has been a lot of interest in Gandalf, and we think we may have found the perfect family for him, with many, many years of wonderful memories to create!
 
Pierre, a Goffin’s cockatoo, came from the same hoarder as Gandalf.  He appears to have never been socialized, and came in with an intense fear of hands and a significant over-vocalization problem.  We have had to teach him how to step up, and it has taken a few months, but he is finally starting to become comfortable with being walked around indoors on our behaviorists’ hands.  His over-vocalizations have lessened quite a bit, although we still have a way to go with this.  He has a large vocabulary, though, and this little guy has really grown on us.  It will be tough to give him up, but we do have some families interested in meeting him!
 
You, our supporters, have made possible all of these stories and many more.  Because of your donations, we have been able to rescue many parrots over the last several months, most of whom have come from neglect and cruelty cases.  While the terrible conditions we saw most of these parrots living in will remain in our memories for a very long time, our focus not on that but on the joy of bringing them to a wonderful new home at ARC, either to live at our facility in sanctuary or to be adopted by a permanent family, is what keeps us going.

We work, even before that, with the current owner.  Through education on proper diet and husbandry, a parrot’s day-to-day physical and psychological requirements, and positive reinforcement training techniques and behavioral modification, our goal is to make it possible for each parrot to remain in its current home for a lifetime.  With your help, we are financially able to provide this valuable service at no charge, and keep many more parrots with their current human companions!

Parrots that are endangered in their native countries cannot be bred here and released back into the wild, because, not only do they lack the survival skills that parrot parents in the wild teach their offspring, but also, a parrot bred here and released into its native land will not be accepted into a flock.  Research has shown flocks in each geographical region have their own distinct “language” or “dialect,” and a parrot raised in captivity will not have the communication skills necessary to be accepted into a flock, which is crucial for survival in nature.  We at ARC feel that no exotic avian species should have ever been taken from their native habitats and brought into our homes, and that irresponsible breeding has brought about an overpopulation of parrots in captivity.   Mankind is responsible for having done this, and it is up us to try to right this wrong.  While nobody alone can save them all, your compassion and generosity are helping to save these exquisite creatures, one by one.  You should be as proud of yourselves as we are of you!
  
Best regards,
 
Melanie Ariessohn