SCOTLAND NECK, NC - Sylvan Heights Bird Park is expanding its conservation efforts with a new, state-of-the-art aviary and propagation facility that will house more than 300 birds native to New Guinea and the South Pacific. Guests will soon be able to journey into the birds’ habitat and enjoy up-close encounters with colorful species like Plum-headed Parakeets, Nicobar Pigeons, and Green-naped Pheasant Pigeons.
The project is a collaboration between Sylvan Heights Bird Park and Pandemonium Aviaries in California, which shares Sylvan Heights’ commitment to preserving rare and endangered species by maintaining sustainable breeding populations. Pandemonium’s founder Michele Raffin established the facility in 1996 with this goal in mind. Recently, Raffin’s focus has shifted towards advocacy for conservation policy change, so she launched a global search for a facility to house Pandemonium’s birds and continue her important sustainable breeding programs.
Dustin Foote, Sylvan Heights Bird Park’s General Curator, says the partnership couldn’t be better for both organizations. “Our commitment to sustainability and education is just one of many reasons we are excited to announce that Pandemonium Aviaries has decided to trust us with its collection of birds”, says Foote. “This commitment will only be strengthened when Pandemonium’s birds arrive this spring.”
Construction will begin in March 2020, and visitors can expect to experience this large new walk-through aviary by late spring or early summer. The separate avian propagation facility will not be open to the public, but Foote says the birds that visitors encounter in the exhibit will have just as much of an impact as those in the breeding program. “People want to save what they care about, what they know, what they are invested in. We hope to engage visitors and make them think about their impact on the natural world.”
About Sylvan Heights Bird Park
Illustrations by Kristen Orr