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RE: [FlaBirding] Does feeding marsh birds bread hurt them?

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  • Renne Leatto
    Tom, I can t answer from any knowledge of bird physiology, but I do know this: At Venetian Gardens in Lake County there s a very healthy and numerous
    Message 1 of 4 , Jan 1, 2009
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      Tom,

      I can't answer from any knowledge of bird physiology, but I do know this:

      At Venetian Gardens in Lake County there's a very healthy and numerous
      population of Purple Gallinules and they all eat a lot of bread. It seems to
      me that if they had any trouble digesting it, they wouldn't live long enough
      to get so comfortable with the human visitors there, from whom they
      incessantly and aggressively beg for bread. Even their young get into the
      bread begging habit before they're fully grown. When the PGs at Venetian
      Gardens are not hitting up the humans for bread, they're rummaging through
      the trash cans for pizza crusts. See pic below.

      Hope that helps.

      Renne







      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Thomas J. Dunkerton
      While I certainly think this was an innocent inquiry, the adverse effects of this action should be addressed along with the simple yes or no as to the direct
      Message 2 of 4 , Jan 1, 2009
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        While I certainly think this was an innocent inquiry, the adverse effects
        of this action should be addressed along with the simple yes or no as to the
        direct health of the bird.

        In the situation described by Renne, it would seem the birds have been
        imprinted to become more of a "pest" than a novelty. Purple Gallinules,
        being native waterfowl, will begin to be taken for granted, if not already,
        in this area and thus the unknowing visitors will never know the value of a
        natural inhabitant but simply see them as a side show. It would be foolish
        to expect that you could stop an attraction like that once it's begun but in
        the interest of Florida's wildlife or any wildlife for that matter, this
        cannot or should not be a simple yes or no answer.
        Can Florida Scrub-jays digest peanuts? Whether or not they can, it may
        cost you $175 !!! Just ask Roy! ;-)

        Again, addressing the situation described by Renne: When these Gallinules
        continue to rummage through trash, and they are deemed a nuisance, who would
        pay the price? And will the people who started the trend of feeding them
        bread, will they be around to accept the blame? Will they take in the
        nuisance birds rather than have them "relocated"? Will they care at all?
        After all, most people engaged in this act end up never getting educated as
        to the reasons why Purple Gallinules shouldn't be eating bread.
        As a member of the birding community, wouldn't you want to share those
        reasons before giving someone license to continue a bad practice? After all
        is said an done, and we look at the big picture, beyond the physiological
        ability of one's digestive tract, bread is not good for Purple Gallinules.

        And while we're at it, they can't have any of my twinkies either! ;-)
        Okay, I'm off my soapbox.

        Tom Dunkerton
        Titusville, FL

        On Thu, Jan 1, 2009 at 11:26 AM, Renne Leatto <rennel@...> wrote:

        > Tom,
        >
        > I can't answer from any knowledge of bird physiology, but I do know this:
        >
        > At Venetian Gardens in Lake County there's a very healthy and numerous
        > population of Purple Gallinules and they all eat a lot of bread. It seems
        > to
        > me that if they had any trouble digesting it, they wouldn't live long
        > enough
        > to get so comfortable with the human visitors there, from whom they
        > incessantly and aggressively beg for bread. Even their young get into the
        > bread begging habit before they're fully grown. When the PGs at Venetian
        > Gardens are not hitting up the humans for bread, they're rummaging through
        > the trash cans for pizza crusts. See pic below.
        >
        > Hope that helps.
        >
        > Renne
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >
        >
        >


        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Christian Newton
        Hey all, having worked with birds in an a captive situation for years, plain in simple (like what has already been said) WHITE BREAD is not good for anything
        Message 3 of 4 , Jan 1, 2009
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          Hey all, having worked with birds in an a captive situation for years, plain
          in simple (like what has already been said) WHITE BREAD is not good for
          anything including birds and maybe most of all birds because its all carbs
          which makes fat and apparently its not an easy fat to burn off, hence why
          its apparently worse for birds (don't ask me why, thats what a nutritionists
          told me). However; if bread is to be fed, a multi-grain or at least wheat
          bread is much better to feed. However knowing what your feeding is a must
          as well, a puddle duck is probably OK to throw some wheat bread to, a sea
          duck type not OK, but a gallinule who's diet is probably mainly aquatic
          vegetation and the occasional invertebrate is probably not OK to throw any
          bread products to.

          So if I where on my property and saw someone throw an un-salted peanut to a
          scrub-jay, I probably wouldn't care that much because corvid's have a huge
          range of diets that they can eat, then if I saw the same person throw a
          piece of whole grain bread to a gallinule I would ask them not to because
          their digestive system is based on aquatic vegetation for the most part.
          This was a Hypothetical scenario as I live in Buffalo, NY and do not have
          scrub-jays or gallinules in my yard, but you all get my drift.

          Lastly- if you don't know the bird you're feeding and you don't know much
          about different foods then you probably should refrain from feeding birds
          until you learn what you're your doing (a simple search on Google will
          answer most questions) and if you see someone who is not a birder or a
          naturalist feeding a bird you might just want to tell them it's not a good
          thing to feed wild animals.

          Now with that said I'm going to have a granola bar, because the last Twinkie
          I had 3 years ago I'm pretty sure is still with me:-)

          Happy New Year and good birding,

          Chris Newton

          Holland, NY







          _____

          From: FlaBirding@yahoogroups.com [mailto:FlaBirding@yahoogroups.com] On
          Behalf Of Thomas J. Dunkerton
          Sent: Thursday, January 01, 2009 9:13 PM
          Cc: FlaBirding@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [FlaBirding] Does feeding marsh birds bread hurt them?



          While I certainly think this was an innocent inquiry, the adverse effects
          of this action should be addressed along with the simple yes or no as to the
          direct health of the bird.

          In the situation described by Renne, it would seem the birds have been
          imprinted to become more of a "pest" than a novelty. Purple Gallinules,
          being native waterfowl, will begin to be taken for granted, if not already,
          in this area and thus the unknowing visitors will never know the value of a
          natural inhabitant but simply see them as a side show. It would be foolish
          to expect that you could stop an attraction like that once it's begun but in
          the interest of Florida's wildlife or any wildlife for that matter, this
          cannot or should not be a simple yes or no answer.
          Can Florida Scrub-jays digest peanuts? Whether or not they can, it may
          cost you $175 !!! Just ask Roy! ;-)

          Again, addressing the situation described by Renne: When these Gallinules
          continue to rummage through trash, and they are deemed a nuisance, who would
          pay the price? And will the people who started the trend of feeding them
          bread, will they be around to accept the blame? Will they take in the
          nuisance birds rather than have them "relocated"? Will they care at all?
          After all, most people engaged in this act end up never getting educated as
          to the reasons why Purple Gallinules shouldn't be eating bread.
          As a member of the birding community, wouldn't you want to share those
          reasons before giving someone license to continue a bad practice? After all
          is said an done, and we look at the big picture, beyond the physiological
          ability of one's digestive tract, bread is not good for Purple Gallinules.

          And while we're at it, they can't have any of my twinkies either! ;-)
          Okay, I'm off my soapbox.

          Tom Dunkerton
          Titusville, FL

          On Thu, Jan 1, 2009 at 11:26 AM, Renne Leatto <rennel@....
          <mailto:rennel%40cfl.rr.com> com> wrote:

          > Tom,
          >
          > I can't answer from any knowledge of bird physiology, but I do know this:
          >
          > At Venetian Gardens in Lake County there's a very healthy and numerous
          > population of Purple Gallinules and they all eat a lot of bread. It seems
          > to
          > me that if they had any trouble digesting it, they wouldn't live long
          > enough
          > to get so comfortable with the human visitors there, from whom they
          > incessantly and aggressively beg for bread. Even their young get into the
          > bread begging habit before they're fully grown. When the PGs at Venetian
          > Gardens are not hitting up the humans for bread, they're rummaging through
          > the trash cans for pizza crusts. See pic below.
          >
          > Hope that helps.
          >
          > Renne
          >
          > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          >
          >
          >

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]





          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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