There are an estimated 50 million parrots in the United States today. Their intelligence and extraordinary personalities make them beloved members of the families that bring them into their homes.
In Of Parrots and People, award-winning journalist and long-time parrot owner Mira Tweti reveals the complex world of parrots-their astonishing intellect, often-intimate relationships with humans, and, unfortunately, the calamitous practices of the bird industry. Delving into the secret world of the global parrot trade, Tweti documents the forces driving these remarkable creatures to the brink of extinction. A critical addition to the popular shelf of books about animals and their behavior, Of Parrots and People is a startling wake-up call in the tradition of Rachel Carson's Silent Spring.
Trenchant analysis woven together with colorful personal narratives from expert scientists, conservationists, eccentric pet owners and amateur animal rescuers reveals the deleterious consequences of mankind's penchant for keeping exotic birds. Tweti (Here, There and Everywhere) begins by debunking the myth of the "bird brain," citing the story of Alex, an African grey research parrot who was proven to have the cognitive skills of a toddler, not uncommon for his breed. The author's research illuminates the staggering variety of the thousands of species of parrots and indicts the individuals who breed, sell and smuggle birds to feed consumer demand. ("Parrots are a luxury item, deprived of liberty purely for human amusement. No one needs to keep a parrot.") She discusses the unacknowledged crisis of a species being hunted to extinction despite the frequency with which they are abandoned by pet owners. Tweti's account is factual and passionate-she likens even the prettiest bird cage to "a slave's shackles"-but she makes it clear where the science ends and her opinions begin. Tweti's work is a valuable resource of astonishing thoroughness, richness and accessibility-despite the occasional ideological inconsistency.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Covers a lot of interesting information about the intelligence of parrots and the horrors the pet parrot trade. We hear so much about the abuse and neglect of dogs and cats but pet birds and their abuse is rarely heard about. This book is very thought provoking. Was shocked at the reality of just how horrible Gods creatures are treated.
I like this book