Parakeets Rescued at Youngsville Marden’s Ark

The Carolina Parakeet might be extinct, but some Virginia parakeets are getting a second chance at life in North Carolina at Marden’s Ark Avian Refuge.


The parakeets were part of a neglect/hoarding case and were reportedly flying free in a small house along with two cockatiels and a finch. According to animal control, there was an inch of bird feces on the floors. A hazardous materials (haz-mat) contractor and officers from animal control spent four days catching the birds. Some birds were nesting within the walls in holes they’d tunneled through the drywall.

Twenty seven budgies were recovered, however three had to be euthanized due to severe illnesses. The remaining twenty-four birds were taken to the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria, in Alexandria, VA.

The owner expressed a desire to have the cockatiels and finch returned, so they will remain at the Animal Welfare League shelter until legal proceedings have concluded. If it is determined that the birds will not be returned to their owner, they too will be offered sanctuary at Marden’s Ark.

Abbie Hubbard (L) of the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria and Dr. Kim Danoff (R) just prior to loading the cages up in the CR-V for transport to North Carolina.
Abbie Hubbard (L) of the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria and Dr. Kim Danoff (R) just prior to loading the cages up in the CR-V for transport to North Carolina.

Dr. Kim Danoff, DVM coordinated the rescue effort between the Animal Welfare League and Marden’s Ark. Transfer occurred Friday, Aug. 1, 2014 after the rescue received a call from Abbie Hubbard, Director of Animal Care for the Animal Welfare League shelter. The birds were brought back to the Youngsville facility on Saturday, Aug. 2.

Birds loaded for a safe trip to Youngsville.
Birds loaded into the “Birdmobile” for a safe trip to Youngsville in the Marden’s Ark Honda CR-V.


All twenty four birds appear to be in good health, however Dr. Danoff will be coming to Marden’s Ark to check each bird and collect blood samples for infectious disease testing. One budgie has a deformed beak but reportedly has been that way “since birth” per the owner. She is able to eat and drink normally but will be closely monitored.

Marden’s Ark is currently holding a fundraising drive to cover expenses such as lab fees and supplies for the exams as well as purchase of a cage large enough for the birds to be reunited as a flock again.

Following an email communication with the local Franklin County SPCA, twelve more birds were rescued on August 7 from a Youngsville residence. The birds, eight budgies, two cockatiels and two parrotlets, were surrendered by their owner who could no longer care for them.

Marden’s Ark is currently a traditional bird rescue, housing the birds in cages indoors. The eventual goal is to build outdoor aviaries with areas that are heated so that the birds can live in them year round. This will enable rescue of birds that may not be adoptable as pets and do not thrive in a pet-type setting – such as former wild-caught ex-breeder birds who do not socialize well with humans. The aviaries would allow the birds to be free to fly, socialize in flocks with others of their kind, and forage in natural plantings.

All birds at Marden’s Ark are provided with fresh food and veterinary care. Once they have been through a period of quarantine to determine they are not carrying diseases that might put other residents of the refuge at risk, they are given time out of their cages each day.

Currently there are forty birds in sanctuary at Marden’s Ark. Sadly, they are unable to accept any more birds at this time due to limitations in space.

Marden’s Ark Avian Refuge was recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) charity in July of 2014. They depend on donations from supporters to continue their mission of giving abused, neglected, abandoned and unwanted companion parrots “a safe place to land.” Their website is http://www.avianrefuge.org. You can find links there to the fundraiser, their contact information and a link to their Facebook page where you can see pictures and updates.

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