President’s Message – Oct/Nov/Dec
Another year nearly over – and WHAT a year it’s been….. Covid 19 certainly changed the complexion of our entire planet —-and definitely the world of aviculture. No shows, no bird fairs, no NBS, transport of animals stopped, started, and then stopped again. We reach out to fellow enthusiasts electronically – FaceBook groups, other social network groups, and the NFSS Virtual Show. It “helps” , but it’s definitely not like getting together with those who share our love of this hobby. For those of us who find pleasure in quiet time alone in our bird rooms – we’ve certainly had a good dose of THAT this year! I hope it’s perhaps resulted in successes you may not have seen in prior years when we were splitting our time between the bird room and other interests and necessary away-from-home activities.
On a positive note, Gary Morgan, President of NBS has been communicating with the Board about the possibility of a 2021 event. We have no way of knowing how our world will look at that point —– but discussion IS taking place about how the Board can gather (electronically, in-person with social distancing…???) to discuss options for a 2021 event . Without a doubt, it will “look” vastly different than prior events —- but it’s encouraging to consider the possibilities IF we could JUST gather safely.
The NFSS Board has received communication from Steve Duncan, President of the National Avian Welfare Alliance and responded in kind via official communication. Lawsuits are being taken against the USDA which could force them to regulate birds under the Animal Welfare Act. These lawsuits, brought by organizations that openly oppose keeping birds in captivity – claim to care about the welfare of birds. Unfortunately, bringing birds under regulation will not affect the majority of those who keep birds in inadequate conditions. Requiring the USDA to inspect every garden aviary or hobbyist – to ensure “minimum standards of care” are met, would unnecessarily divert resources from the responsibility it already has to currently licensed facilities – and, it has the potential to do significant harm to birds and to aviculture. For more information about this and about NAWA – go to www.nawabirds.org We need to be informed bird keepers or the privilege of keeping birds could become a thing of the past. The NFSS Board of Directors will continue to stay abreast of these and any other proposed regulations to our hobby but encourages each of you to become active participants in submitting comments and becoming personally involved and use your voice and your vote.
Rebecca Mikel, President