In celebration of National Bird Day 2016, Barry Kent MacKay, Senior Program Associate for Born Free USA and lifelong bird enthusiast, is writing a special five-part blog series. Below is the fifth and final installment.
If there is one overriding message National Bird Day was meant to deliver, it is that wild bird species belong in the wild-for their benefit, for the benefit of the environment, and, whether we realize it or not, for our benefit, as well.
And, each year for National Bird Day, we pick a general theme to address. This year, we chose to discuss those "cute videos" of captive birds (usually members of the parrot family) that some find amusing-but that ultimately propagate the myth that birds are well-suited to be pets.
Yes, most folks seemed to understand our message, including the websiteThe Dodo, which agreed (I'm delighted to say) not to share URLs with any more captive bird videos. Sadly, both Buzzfeed and Petco did not. Petco, in fact, held a contest for "pet" bird videos! Such a contest glorifies and promotes keeping birds in captive confinement: the polar opposite of what National Bird Day is all about.