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Josie's Story

You can follow Josie-Bug and Josie-Bug's big sister for occassional behind the scenes photos and updates by liking their pages!

  • Wix Facebook page


  • Wix Facebook page


In all of the years I have been involved in avian rescue and taking hundreds of phone calls a year from people, I never really would have thought that a baby in an egg would have been a living being we would end up helping.  I have always been an advocate against the breeding/production of baby parrots into the pet trade but when we were faced with the dilemma of helping a new baby come into this world, the decision was based on how far along the being inside the egg had progressed once we were called and involved.  To kill it at that point just did not sit well with any of us.  We hope you’ll understand why we chose to help this baby out.  We continue to be strong advocates against the breeding of parrots in captivity as there is an overabundance of older parrots already in need of placement or adoptive homes.  Please do what you can to prevent your own birds from breeding and if you are in the position to take in another parrot, choose to adopt an older bird in need. 


We always try to find the opportunity to improve the lives of parrots in captivity with each case presented to us and this baby is no exception.  We have been and will continue to document just how tough it is to properly raise a baby/juvenile with a great deal of socialization with both humans and other birds as well as a mostly cage-free lifestyle filled with enriching life experiences in an effort to allow this baby to grow up to have the best possible life in captivity.  All too often, parrots are purchased as babies and brought home to a life in a cage while its flock goes off to work most of the day.  The birds are left in isolation and will often develop frustration which turns to aggression as they reach maturity.  Our hope is that people can read about the intense level of care Kirah will be providing Josie in an effort to discourage people from doing so themselves when it may be realized they cannot adequately give a good life to a parrot as a pet.


-Matt Smith-






Well, it looks like "the bird is outta the cage"...

A few of you already know about her, and some of you may not know of her.   Some of you even follow her page.  (She may be a he... DNA test results are pending)

Towards the end of September I received a very interesting phone call. An older woman who had her African Greys for many years found that her bird started laying eggs one morning.  (They were never DNA-ed and thought to be the same sex).  She was not sure whether or not they were fertile. I explained to her how to look and find out if the eggs were in fact fertile or not. She was very nervous to touch them and since I am often in the area where she lives, I told her I would stop by and "candle" her eggs. Out of all of the eggs, one had a heartbeat.  Her husband did not want any more birds to be in the household as the two they have are quite noisy, as are most birds, right? She implored that I would take the egg off of her hands but I told her to let the mother take care of the egg until it was closer to hatching.  They both agreed to let the mother sit on the egg as the life inside progressed to a hatchling.  I planned that over the next couple of weeks to try and change the husband’s mind so that he’d be willing to leave the egg with the mother until it could properly fledge, but he did not want anything to do with that knowing that his wife was going to grow attached to this new life.  The call came in that the egg was “chirping” and I again requested that the mother raise the baby to 3 weeks of life outside of the egg.  He wouldn’t allow it and I was either to "take it or the egg with the chirping baby bird inside of it was going to meet its end with the egg being thrown at a tree."  I went and picked up the egg of course.  I also explained what to do in the future if any other eggs were laid to avoid this kind of "problem" in the future.  So, in the past I have raised birds (lovebirds) that chose to mate on their own accord.  I have never in my life "sold" a bird that I've raised.  I had spoken with Matt at the beginning of all of this, and he told me that if I wanted to try and raise this bird from an egg, he was fine with it, but it would be my bird as the sanctuary is at capacity financially.  Josie-Bug (Rosie, Jane, and LadyBug name’s put together, 3 very special Greys that passed this year) came to be with us and I carried her egg around with me for three days before the miracle of her life began with hatching here in the living room. For the next two - three weeks I did not sleep much as I needed to feed her every two hours. She has grown into an amazing bird that is ahead of schedule, already trying to mimic, already trying to talk, already trying to perch, and trying to eat on her own.  Since a lot of you have asked about her progress, I have felt it was time to introduce our supporters to our newest NON-sanctuary spokes-bird like her/his big sister, Joupityr and hopefully help many of you understand why she is here.  Matt and I are looking forward to starting the New Year with this new life that I have taken upon myself to save.  Don't let Matt fool you... He's in love with Josie-Bug.  He's never seen a bird so small, nor has he ever watched a bird hatch. He has also learned how to properly feed her for the times I must be absent.  He's amazing with her.  


We lost several incredible souls this past year.  We are going into the New Year with this new life.   Josie’s name signifies three birds that touched us very deeply.   Last year on New Year's Eve, December 31, 2013, we lost our precious Dot.  A Quaker in her 30's,...Wild-caught, ex-breeder.  Every month it seems that one of our aging wild caught ex breeders left us.  It has been extremely painful and many of you were able to follow LadyBug's last few days.   We will never forget the support and the outpouring of kindness we received during that time.   Josie was beside LadyBug as she crossed over and took her last breath.   LadyBug enjoyed sweet Josie-Bug.   We even told LadyBug that Josie has part of her name. 

Please join us on welcoming our newest member of the team "Josie-Bug".  Onto a new year with a new life.  Hopefully it's an amazing new year with a new aviary for our small birds!  So much to look forward to...Let's go!!!

LadyBug, Rest in Peace

Jane, Rest in Peace

Rosie, Rest in Peace

Meet Josie-Bug.  Three of our Greys that passed, live on in her and in her name.  

Jane,  Rosie,  

and Lady-Bug ....


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