End of the Line

It is with deep regret that I announce that our wild Brooklyn parrot safaris have reached the end of the line.

As you might know if you’ve checked into this site in the past few months, the last two safaris we did were very disappointing. In fact, we saw no parrots at all — something that has never happened in the 14 years I’ve been conducting these monthly walking tours.

I had hoped that the parrots’ disappearance from the Brooklyn College area was a temporary anomalously. But I’ve recently received word from a resident that no parrots have been seen for several months in the areas the birds have been known to frequent. This doesn’t necessarily indicate that any terrible thing happened to them (although, given past events, I am unwilling to rule this out), but it does mean that it will be difficult, if not impossible, for me to easily introduce them to the public in the way that I’ve done in the past.

I also had hoped that — by shifting the location of the safaris from Brooklyn College to Green-Wood Cemetery — our tours might go better. But it seems that the size of this colony has decreased greatly in recent years, and, due to recent changes in the foliage layout at the cemetery, they’re much harder to see, because instead of gathering at the main gate, the parrots typically fly away from the cemetery to random destinations, making them impossible to observe without a lot of often fruitless chasing far away from our meeting site.

OK – this is important to say. The cessation of tours doesn’t mean that there are no parrots left in Brooklyn. It doesn’t necessarily mean that the population has crashed, or that they — like many New Yorkers these days — have decided to move elsewhere due to bla bla bla. It just means that the birds are much more difficult to observe for the reasons listed above. If things change — and they might — I’ll be more than happy to relaunch the safaris. But for now, I can’t responsibly continue them — the risk of disappointing the public is just too great.

Again, I am very sorry to make this announcement. I am very grateful to the many people who have joined us over the years — it was a delight to meet you and I can’t recall a time in which I’ve had more fun. I would also like to thank the management and staff at Brooklyn College and Green-Wood Cemetery, who’ve cheerfully tolerated the eccentric pursuits of myself and fellow parrot “passionistas” over the years.

And most of all, I’d like to thank the parrots. Wherever you are (and I still hope that some of you remain in Brooklyn), your presence here — even if temporary — delivered a lot of joy to a lot of people, so you’ll not soon be forgotten.

Steve Baldwin