January 25-27, 2019, Houston. — The Houston-based National Parrot Rescue and Parrot Foundation (NPRPF) hosted its celebratory 20th Annual Parrot Festival this past weekend, drawing attendance from across North America. “Queen” Georgia Hayes, NPRPF President, and Danny Sigmon, Festival Coordinator, presided over a Convention center decked in colorful tables covered in bird chachki, raffle-ticket drums, and auction items. Perches, aviaries and companion parrot homebases (aka “cages”); bird toys for foraging, gnawing, preening, cracking in two with keratin clamps; festooned ceilings, feathered jewelry and the almighty Red Feather Hat, destined to steal the show at the banquet!

Nonprofits and NGOs from sanctuaries and conservation/recovery programs to the new Seattle Flight Club rounded out the fun. All brightness was but backdrop before the camaraderie of the bird folk who flocked. . . Ahem, and, yes, the banquet room did host heavily scheduled lectures by experts which intrigued, entranced and challenged this unduly joyous, good-humoured crowd.

Alongside presentations from such notables as anthrozoologist Pat Anderson and AFA leader/seasoned aviculturist Steve Duncan, four experts presented four endangered species: Jafet Velez (Puerto Rican Parrot), Bennett Hennessey (Blue-throated macaw), Dr. Caroline Efstathion-Horsburg (Red Siskin Initiative), and David Skidmore (Eclectus Parrot). Perhaps most delightfully, budding scientist Andrea Celeste Velez, Jafet’s daughter, who begins medical school in the fall, presented her first academic paper on Determination of the Normal Blood Chemistry Values for the Puerto Rican Parrot. — Aviculture is family is friends is lifestyle!

BirbObserver fell behind on its intended January schedule — yet the drive to write more articles surged out of the woodwork in Houston. . . BirbObserver in coming days shall debut a new page: ConSAv, for conservation and aviculture articles. Accordingly, over the next few weeks we hope to bring you not only Gen(i)us articles on the Golden Conure and Toco Toucan still outstanding but also articles on ConSAv regarding the reintroduction of Puerto Rican Parrots, the Flagship blue-throated macaws at Armonia’s Barba Arzu Reserve, and the Red Siskin Initiative.

Below we share the posters from the Blue-throated macaw exhibit at the Festival — open to the public.

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