Let us start by stating that we believe that parrots should be allowed to be, simply stated, parrots! It's an open question to us whether parrots are suitable to be pets. Any parrot person who is honest will admit that Cockatoo parrots are not. Suitable to be pets, that is. We are old enough to remember the Cockatoo craze resulting from the 1970s Robert Blake television crime series Baretta, with his faithful Cockatoo parrot named Fred. We can only imagine how many Cockatoos were discarded, abandoned, and neglected after the initial television induced infatuation wore off.
It is our experience working in parrot rescue that parrot rescues and sanctuaries are populated by Cockatoos more than any other parrot. We were less than thrilled recently to learn about the appearance on the reality television program America's Got Talent of a new bird whisperer (we use that term pejoratively) working under the nom de guerre Extreme Parrots, by the name of Clint Carvalo. We don't watch reality television, and very little television at all. Running a parrot rescue, we have enough reality in our life to deal with. We were made aware of Extreme Parrots by the effusive postings about the program on Facebook by parrot people who should know better.
Extreme Parrots purports to use only abandoned and abused parrots. Acquired presumably from parrot rescues and sanctuaries. Which begs the question: What parrot rescues and sanctuaries in their right minds would provide parrots for entertainment purposes? We don't have a clue if Extreme Parrots won their heat and advanced in the America's Got Talent contest? Or what their next bird trick would be if they did. We only know that people who should not under any circumstances be allowed to have parrots will acquire parrots in an attempt to duplicate the tricks they see on television. Parrots will be lost, hurt, discarded, and abandoned in the attempt. Anyone who pretends otherwise is an idiot!
We can wonder how many parrots were lost or discarded in the attempt to perfect this one particular bird trick? We're not even sure if it's real, or computer enhanced. Nonetheless, there will be consequences for parrots in the real world because of the use of parrots on reality television. And the consequences, for parrots and parrot rescues, will not be good.