Out and About:
The Homeless Birds

Last week while I stood outside the Seward Park PCC store, I heard a thunderous roar of wings overhead. As I looked up, a brilliant flash of green flew by, filling me with awe and wonder. The person I had been talking to was surprised that I did not know about the colony of conures (Parrots) that live in Seward Park.

Refugees from a domestic prison cell, the conures thrive well in the hostile environment of Seward Park beside the eagles, crows and domestic cats turned wild. Sticking out into Lake Washington like a crooked finger, the park provides food and shelter for a colony of nine or 10 birds.

Bob Warner, a Seattle Parks Department employee who has worked at Seward Park for the last three years, says, "The Conures have lived in the Park for the last 10 years, with little or no change in the population of the colony for the last three years."

Charlie Harding of the Seattle Parrot Shop reports that "There is more than one variety of conure at Seward Park, with colonies at Northgate and Discovery Park."

Beautiful Seward Park also provides for other escaped pets, including cats and rabbits. Warner has named one of the largest cats "Wiley." The eleven bald eagles and countless number of pesky crows inhabiting the park provide a means of population control for the escaped pets.

For information about bird watching tours and pre-registration instructions call the Seward Park Nature Center at (206)684-4396.


© June 27, 2002 Paul von Kempf, JR.
All rights reserved

Paul's Essays