Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Birds Of A Feather
Flying with your bird
Parrots are great travelers, but you should only consider traveling with them in the U.S. due to strict CITES regulations. I can take Buddha into Canada but can't bring him back into the U.S. without special documentation and only through a USFS-designated entry port. I've heard stories of people driving motor homes into Canada with their parrot, finding out later they have to drive thousands of miles out of their way to get their birds back into the U.S. through one of these ports of entry!
Buddha, who is now almost 13 years old, is well known on the air-show circuit. Often, when I get a request to fly a show, the organizers ask if I'm going to bring him with me. He can be quite amusing in the air-show briefing, too! During the show, he sits in my car, keeps me company and looks out the window. He loves watching everything, and people are fascinated by him, especially kids. I have to be careful because he can bite, but he always recognizes a "bird person" by the way they talk to him, put their hand under him to pick him up, or put him on their shoulder. He's also fun to bring to schools or when I'm giving a talk to a group, and is a great conversation starter!
They say you never own a parrot, they only grace you with their presence. After all, they'll never be a domesticated creature like a dog or a cat. No matter how exasperated I get with Buddha and his demands, I smile because I know how lucky I am to be graced by his trust and his presence.
Page 3 of 3
Labels: Careers, Columns, Features, Learning Center, People and Places, Pilot Skills, Aviation Personalities, Guest Speaker, Pilot Safety