Saturday, March 3, 2012


Shockingly long time since the last blog. I am not even going to try and catch up – you can do that with the newsletter if you like. Yes, there are now two quarterly BBR newsletters spanning 10 months: what do you mean, lack of commitment??

It seems we are into kite season again with its drying breeze and fire-fanning gusts. I am hoping for enough of the odd rain-shower to dampen the tinders of the forest floors, but I don’t suppose we will be that lucky.It's also the season for barn owls as proven by the 5 hissing, smelly little darlings living in the office right now.  If anyone you know is complaining of owls in the attic, please steer them toward our factsheet

Embarrassingly for a bird sanctuary, we’ve had a bad year for domestic fowl so far.
We were called out to pick up a (very) small croc in Roaring Creek. It had string embedded in its neck so it was obviously once a loved and appropriate family pet. Acting on good advice, we removed the string and put the croc in our duck pond for observation. If anyone wants to know, this is precisely how you turn a duck pond into a croc pond.
A few days later, we noticed that our land-lubber ducks and a lot of our chickens were disappearing at an alarming rate thanks to the neighbouring dogs. 

We decided to erect a lovely new fence between the dogs and us, but once the river dropped, they easily found their way around. Then we discovered that a jaguarundi had also been busy around the pond, so there was nothing for it but to fence in the chickens entirely, catch the darned croc and in doing so, give the ducks back their refuge. I won’t bore you with details, but 4lbs of chicken pieces later, the croc is still there, the croc-trap has become a lawn ornament and Jerry is in the process of draining the pond.
Moral: crocs don’t belong in duck-ponds.

Mating season is in full flow at Belize Bird Rescue. Buzz and Spike are guarding the Crazy Aviary, the yellow-heads are worse than they ever were, the peacock (yes!) spends the entire day about six inches from our workers heels, Harry is humping his perch and Pepperito is relentless in his attacks on son-in-law Geoff. In fairness, Geoff takes it very well, Pepper is not exactly silent in flight as he launches himself from his broken nest-box, so a well-timed duck has Pepper sailing overhead and Geoff’s leg muscles aching by the end of the day. The only time Geoff comes unstuck is when the fly-catchers nesting outside his bedroom door join Pepper in the attack.

Lastly, I am pathetically excited about our posters which are now printed and awaiting distribution to all 480+ schools in Belize. I must once again thank the World Parrot Trust 2011 Parrot Lovers Cruise passengers for their fantastic donation which made this possible. More details on that are also in the newsletter.
Let’s hope that the messages on the poster provide some food for thought this nesting season, and save one or two parrots in the process.