Illegal birds seized and put to sleep
June 11, 2004

Illegal birds seized and put to sleep

Two birds, imported illegally into this country, were seized and put to sleep by government officials here this past Monday.
And that discovery of the illegally imported birds has put officials on an even higher state of alert.{{more}}
The Ministry of Agriculture says the Macaw birds, which are a type of parrot, were sent from Guyana via St. Vincent and the Grenadines to St. Martin. Strangely enough, though the birds landed here at Port Kingstown on Saturday, June 5, and carried documents from Caribbean Star.
They had been sent from Guyana, a Ministry release said, supposedly from a resident of St. Vincent and the Grenadines to himself. The birds were seized by customs officials who notified and requested the prompt intervention of the authorities at the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries.
According to Dr. Kathian Hackshaw, chief veterinary officer, in addition to the failure of the documents to include the mandatory health certificate from the country of origin, no permission had been granted to anyone for the importation of the birds here.
She further stated that through the 1974 Animal Movement and Disease Control Act, no birds are allowed from places on the South American continent and a number of other countries, due to the presence of diseases such as psittacosis. Psittacosis is a chronic respiratory disease that can seriously affect the local birds, including the St. Vincent Parrot, ducks and poultry. In addition, it can be transmitted to the human population.
The birds were brought to the Small Livestock Clinic at the Ministry of Agriculture where they were put to sleep.
Dr. Hackshaw is cautioning Vincentians and visitors alike that under no circumstances should they breach the laws of the country with respect to the importation of animals or any wildlife.
The Ministry says that this incident comes on the heels of the importation of a dog from Trinidad just last week. That dog was also put to sleep.
Dogs are carriers of the dreaded rabies disease, which affects both animals and man.