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Regarding the sections Pets/Captive Animals & the wildlife section.
Here at the Barn Owl Centre we are forever picking up the pieces from the so called pet trade of birds of prey. The birds we care for are treated as wildlife & not as pets. Just because we feed them & look after them is no different than people feeding garden birds.
I have just posted a close up shot of an eagle Owl & chose the close up section rather than the pets section. If I am posting images of our birds I will not put them into the pet section because I refuse. This tells people as far as I am concerned that a bird of prey is a pet. There are domestic pets like cats & dogs, birds of prey really should not be put under this section.
I will post my images under the wildlife section from now on because that is what they are, this I feel should be respected.
To let people know its a captive bred bird why not put in the title in backets (c) for captive bred & (w) if its a wild subject, this would be much easier rather than taking away peoples choice of what section they can post an image.
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I understand your perspective Vince but I think the main reason for having the categories is to communicate to people where the shot was taken. This way they can aspire to achieve the same results: either at close quarters in controlled conditions, or in the wild. I would see a bird of prey in the "Pets/Captive Animals" section as a captive wild animal. I think the categories are merely to communicate that animal's situation at that moment in time.
I fully appreciate why you would not want your birds labelled as pets though.
Lauren is right Vince. Also for those who see a stunning pic of, say an owl, can appreciate the extra effort that may have gone into tracking one down in the wild rather than attending a sanctuary or centre for birds of prey and photographing one sat on a man made perch. I hope you realise we are not belittling the way captive birds are cared for, we are just trying to distinguish the potential photographic element involved.
I do understand the point that is being made Pete but a simple (c) or (w) in the title should let the viewer know how & where it was taken.
I don't want the birds I work with labelled under the Pet section thats all plus I would like that choice of where to upload my work. I do feel very strongly about this!
Sorry for starting this & for feeling the way I do about this subject!
Thanks also for the reply Lauren, appreciated!
Vince, a couple of questions.
Who is Kain?
Who is Turner?
They are your Eagle owls?
And you have 'pet'names for them, yes. You handle them daily?
And tell me honestly, do you weigh them before you fly them to make sure they are hungry enough to return to the lure/bait?
(I am not saying you starve or mistreat them in any way)
That sort of treatment, to my mind, undoubtedly makes them pets even more so than the people, myself included, who attend centres like yours for photographic purposes!
However you say you treat them, they are captive, and in the case of your own birds, they are also pets!
Ian, the distinction Vince is trying to make is that these birds are captive wild birds and those that can be released are. To class them as pets would make it seem as if it was okay for people to take birds or eggs out of the wild specifically to keep or sell as pets, this is not what Vince does.
I would imagine the birds are given names because it is easier than saying can you look at the tawny owl we got in on January 3.
Personally I don't look at the categorisation of a photo but I can well understand Vince not wanting to go anywhere near a Pet label. Maybe pet and captive should be separated.
This category is not saying pets are the same as captive wildlife, the are just separated from wildlife because of the reasons above. We realise they are two separate categories, but to avoid having a huge list of categories they are group conveniently from a viewing/list point of view.
Ian, yes they are captive, no they are not pets, we don't stroke them like you would dog or a cat. Yes they are weighed because this helps us to manage their diet & body weights. If we kept them fat then this would put a lot of pressure on their feet which can cause problems like bumblefoot, bumblefoot is leathal and is a pressure sore that can develop on the pads of their feet if kept fat in aviaries. Weighing them is vital & flying them helps towards fitness, plus it gives them a life outside the aviary. Starving them is not what we do, working closely with them gives us a better understanding plus it creates the trust & respect between the handler & the bird. We have a number of birds here which we can just let out & leave out, whether at a fat weight or when hungry, plus they make their own way back from the fields back to their avairies. Ian you don't have to stave a bird of prey to get it to come back to you, we have more than proved that, but this as taken time to achieve.
Pet names: Yes we do have pet names, this is makes management a bit easy, imagine going out to the fields and calling out "Eagle Owl" where are you.
A Captive label is better than a Pet Label, surely you should have some respect for that if you love wildlife, its not the birds fault its captive bred. We don't breed birds here we pick the pieces up from those who breed more for the so called pet market.
I know they are both in the same section but all I have asked is the choice to post my images where I feel they should go, if its captive I will simply put a (c) in the title.
Maybe the Pet category should be grouped with people/portraits.
Maybe just replace all the different animals options with an 'Animals' section ...
Now that's something I could live with. Mind you to stop the pedants it would have to be animals/birds/fish/mammals/amphibians/reptiles/insects........
Just as an idea, and for the sake of argument it could be captive animals and wild animals. Would that be acceptable?
Nice one Lauren, personally I think you have hit the nail on the head. This way either the "(c) for captive or (w) for wild" can be put in the title to let the viewer know its origin.
Gets my vote!!!!!
Could work, although the people who complained originally may still not like having them in the same category. I do think it is more appropriate to have captive and wild together, with pets/domesticated in another one.
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