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Old 02-06-2020, 12:44 PM
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Hello, and question about volunteering at rescues

Hi everyone!

I'm really happy to register here; I've developed quite an obsession with parrots, thanks to Youtube videos. I've been very saddened to learn of the current parrot crisis, which I had no idea about. I have a question, I hope it's ok to post it here, as I don't know which would be the best of the many other fora for this.

While I don't think I can try to share my home with a bird right now, I would like to offer to volunteer at a local rescue. I'm a musician, with an often changing weekly schedule. Do rescues generally require working the same 'shift' per week, or is it usually more flexible than that?

And one other question: I saw a video where a lady told of catching a serious illness (I think psittacosis) from a pet-shop parrot. Would this be a risk, or developing Bird Keeper's Lung, from volunteering? I'm a clarinetist, so I need to think about this.

Thanks a lot!

Peter
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Old 02-06-2020, 02:13 PM
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Re: Hello, and question about volunteering at rescues

it's going to vary immensely from rescue to rescue on their requirements regarding volunteers but from my experience majority of places treat it like a normal job without pay

psittacosis isn't very common and you get it from essentially ingesting fecal matter or getting bit by an parrot that has just munched on some infects poop. So as long as you practice safe hygeine and take care of any bites properly the risk is very very minimal.
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Old 02-06-2020, 03:00 PM
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Re: Hello, and question about volunteering at rescues

Thanks for considering volunteering, it’s a great way to learn a lot about parrots and get to know some pretty special birds!

Personally I’ve been a weekly volunteer for about 3 years. I think it can vary greatly between organizations. I would suggest talking with them, let them know what your constraints are, and see what you might be able to help with. Depending on how much notice your schedule changes have - they might be able to work with it. Also depends what tasks you are helping with - “must do tasks” have less flexibility, but rescues have a lot of needs and some are not as time sensitive.

Illness is generally not a big concern if normal hygiene practices are followed. I do know of a few volunteers that have athsma who wear masks when working in rooms full of cockatoos (very dusty birds) to mitigate any possible irritation to their lungs.
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Old 02-06-2020, 11:58 PM
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Re: Hello, and question about volunteering at rescues

Welcome to the forums, Peter! Deep respect for understanding limitations and not succumbing to a parrot impulse purchase! How wonderful you are considering volunteering at a rescue, I'd think they would welcome your enthusiasm! As others suggest, transmission of disease from birds to humans is extremely rare. Underlying issues such as asthma may be aggravated and can be mitigated by proper ventilation and masks.
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Old 02-07-2020, 12:41 PM
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Re: Hello, and question about volunteering at rescues

Welcome to you! Where is home?
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Old 02-09-2020, 12:36 AM
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Re: Hello, and question about volunteering at rescues

Home is Toronto Canada. The main parrot rescue here has a notice on their website that they are not currently accepting volunteers, and an exotic animal rescue did make it clear that they need people to commit to a regular weekly schedule, so I may be out of luck for now. But I'll keep looking! thanks again, Peter
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Old 02-17-2020, 06:22 AM
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Re: Hello, and question about volunteering at rescues

Well done to you .
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Old 02-17-2020, 05:57 PM
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Re: Hello, and question about volunteering at rescues

GREAT THAT YOU WANT TO VOUNTEER--- SO IMPORTANT!!

Unlikely that you would get bird-keepers lung (that tends to be long-term exposure--- but many people are allergic to birds- ESPECIALLY powder-down varieties)--- pssitacosis is possible, but pretty rare---I do know at least 2 people who have had it.

If you are a musician, a bird isn't going to be a good fit for you until you settle down, but if you are considering it, here is a post I just made for another person who hadn't had birds and it contains a lot of information that you will need to know before adopting:

Questions about getting an Eclectus or African Grey Parrot

Scroll down to the 3rd and 4th posts I made on that threat and read them for detail-- it contains a lot of important stuff that isn't widely discussed in the parrot-world (at least not within pet-shops) I know you are getting a different species of bird, but the safety stuff and other info is all stuff I wish I had known in detail when I got a bird.

After you read the link above, here are some links to things I discussed in those posts (for some reason, some of the internal links stopped working).
https://www.ewg.org/research/canarie...on-kills-birds
https://www.ewg.org/research/canaries-kitchen
https://www.ewg.org/research/canarie...-death-diaries
https://www.herebird.com/bird-safe-cookware/

https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-p...ngers-to-birds
https://www.beautyofbirds.com/homesafety.html

Last edited by noodles123; 02-17-2020 at 06:21 PM.
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Old 02-17-2020, 06:36 PM
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Re: Hello, and question about volunteering at rescues

Welcome! I really like your style. And you're getting wonderful responses from our wonderful Community.

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