B.C. parrot refuge transfer complete, hundreds of birds now up for adoption

By The Canadian Press
July 27, 2016 - 1:04pm

COOMBS, B.C. — Hundreds of parrots are now up for adoption after the last of the birds was safely removed from Vancouver Island’s World Parrot Refuge.

Refuge supervisor Matthew Spate says between 450 to 500 parrots have left the sanctuary at Coombs, located about 150 kilometres north of Victoria.

The sprawling refuge has been in operation for more than a decade but faced an Aug. 1 deadline to remove all the parrots, which at one point numbered more than 800.

Refuge founder Wendy Huntbatch died last February after devoting much of her life to caring for parrots abandoned by owners and breeders.

Spate says the parrots are at a former Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Shelter, while The Greyhaven Exotic Bird Sanctuary in Surrey, B.C., is part of the effort to relocate the parrots.

He says many of the hundreds of people who expressed interested in adopting one of the refuge’s parrots can expect calls shortly.

“It was a big step where we were able to remove the birds and now it’s a process of making sure the birds are healthy,” Spate says. “Then we can start figuring out how to rehome them.”

He said there was a time crunch to get the birds out of the refuge, but now the adoption process will press ahead.

“I think we’ll be able to find homes for all these birds,” Spate says. “Some of the homes will have to be more special people because these birds were in the refuge for 12 years and are not as sociable as could be.”

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