Sunday, August 06, 2006

Avian Emergency and After life Care

My dh and i were talking about what to do in case of a tornado this morning. We live in rural central Georgia with lots of sweetgum and pine trees around our home and aviary. We do not have a basement so that isn't an option for us. Most of my birds are in an outside aviary so trees and bad weather are a very real danger for them. An evacuation plan to move or secure the birds is very needed. This is likened to the home and school fire drills for our children. We need to know exactly what we are going to do to make our birds safe during a storm, whether it is a hurricane or tornado. I know that realistically, we cannot actually perform a storm drill; however, i do think we need to prepare for storms by having a written plan and checklist.
When we are in a hurry and worried is not the time to try to remember what supplies and our intentions to protect our birds. A written plan and checklist will provide us with a calm, clear plan of action to depend on when our thoughts are flooded with panic.
Most of us are required through our individual state licensure bureau to keep a bird log. Place your checklist and plan in your bird log. This will make it easy to find during the initial hurry and scurry of preparing to move the birds.
Put together an avian medical box for your birds. In situations like this, you will likely have a blood feather that requires your attention.
During the stormie season for your area, keep enough food bagged in gallon bags for several days so you can grab it and go. Cycle this food periodically to keep it fresh or freeze it.
Walk through your plan several times a year so that it is not new to you when you grab your bird log and initiate the evacuation and securing procedures.
Another dark subject to consider is the after our life care of your bird(s). If you are in our situation, our children are not interested in avian culture at this point in their lives. They have all said to make sure we have the "disposal" of the birds taken care of in our will or there will be a giant feather garage sale if something happens to the two of us.
I think this is a personal choice for each of us and all of us are unique. Our birds have different personalities, some pleasant, some not so friendly; some of us are breeders, some of us have just pets. Please take some time to consider who will take care of your birds in case of your death or illness.
Donate the birds to an avian santuary in your will.
State in your will a friend who will inherit your birds
Write up a care plan for your birds so that anyone can step in and care for them on a short term basis.
Include:
brand of food
supplier information and phone number
description of bird's personality
picture of each bird attached to above description
recipes for homemade foods and directions on how often to give it

Setup a care trust for said friend to help with costs after you are gone. This could be done with a certain amount of cash from your life insurance policy.
Talk with other breeders about setting up a care co-op in case of long term illness. Put it in writing so your family will know who to contact -- names, phone numbers, addresses.

4 comments:

deb said...

When I started reading this post I thought you were going to be talking about what to do with the body if a bird dies! Off the mark today, I am.

Leigh Anne Haygood said...

hmmm... that might be another blog for another day....
lol

Bonsai Birds said...

"Most of us are required through our individual state licensure bureau to keep a bird log."

Apparently this is something that the state of North Carolina does not require...but I am curious and would love details on what the requirements are for a bird log.

I've been enjoying your blog. And by the way, I found it from your signature line from an e-mail to the Southern States Parrot Group.

Kind Regards,

Andrea F. Fahy
www.BonsaiBirds.com

Leigh Anne Haygood said...

hi, Andrea!
Georgia requires breeders/dealers to keep a record or log book of all bird transactions, even checking babies into our nursery. we also do a monthly inventory of beaks for the Dept. of Ag.
thanks for reading my blog!
Leigh Anne