Abused and illegal parrots seized in Paraguay
Wednesday, January 09, 2013
By Peter M. Tase
On November 30, amidst efforts by Paraguay’s government to stop drug trafficking and money laundering, all sorts of trafficking was found to still persist in the landlocked country. This time, different from every day news, there were two hundred baby parrots to be kidnapped from their nets and be the victims of illegal trafficking in Neuland, Chaco – Paraguay. Traffickers were planning to sell these colorful birds on the black market. These parrots belong to a species that is able to be taught with great ease to repeat human speech.
At the moment when they were rescued, the parrots where found to be featherless due to a ruthless treatment by their abductors, who placed them in wooden boxes used to transport vegetables. Blue fronted parrots are some of the most expensive birds in the region reaching a price of $2000 each on the black market. These parrots are being treated at a national park in Paraguay, under the supervision of volunteers and experts from the Ministry of Environment in the Department of Boqueron, which is a jurisdiction approximately 600 miles northwest from Asuncion. Many of the birds are babies and demand a high level of maintenance and special water based food and fruits such as watermelons, melons, oranges, they also need protein consumption just like infant humans.
According to Rocio Barreto: “Many people want to have them at home, but that cannot be done because we have to help them in their parenting, because they are without their mothers, The job is too big.” Baby parrots will continue to be monitored by these volunteers until they are able to fly and taken into the forest, their desired habitat. Currently, associate district attorney Luis Piñánez, is investigating this rare but lucrative crime.