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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun Oct 12, 2014, 06:28 PM

70. This is so infuriating!

I have no doubt that more than just those two birds were affected. Part of my job as a bird keeper in a zoo (for 30yrs) was taking care of the flamingo flocks. When someone or something out of the usual routine approaches these birds it sends them all into a panicked frenzy. They will blindly run in every direction, and even trample their own flock members that happen to fall. It's chaos beyond belief. Plus, that panic can cause what is called capture myopathy, a release of lactic acid into the system, which affects the oxygen output of the heart. If bad enough it will lead to death just by itself either right away or even weeks later, no other injuries needed. And it's true, the pairs are devoted to each other and I'm sure that the male tried to defend his female.

These particular birds were Chilean Flamingos, which are small--the female was probably no more than 7 lbs at the max and maybe 3-4' tall. So I can just imagine these oafs running amongst the flock grabbing at whoever they could. Argh, it just makes me sick. Any time it was necessary for us keepers to get hands on a particular bird, it required planning, timing etc all to separate that specific one with the least amount of stress on every bird in the group. In the majority of cases when the flock is disturbed, or their regular routine is changed, they will go off feed completely for a day or more, so it's critical to keep the upsets to a minimum. That's why I'm sure there were more problems than just with the two birds that didn't make it.

Sorry for the rant, I know in the big scheme of things this is not the end of the world, but it really broke my heart to think of what these mindless jerks did and I'm sure they thought it was no big deal. It was just a bird. Plus I bet he/they will only get a slap on the wrist in the end.

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Judi Lynn Oct 2014 OP
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LineReply This is so infuriating!
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