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Stop the State-Sanctioned Killing of Connecticut's Monk Parakeets

November 17, 2005 | Monk Parakeet

Connecticut's United Illuminating Company in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture has started destroying Monk Parakeet nests and gassing the birds living there.

The bulk of the killings are currently being undertaken in West Haven, but will soon spread to Milford, Stratford, Bridgeport and beyond. The $125,000 program, supported by both Connecticut's Department of Environmental Protection and Connecticut's Audubon Society, targets 103 nests throughout the state.


Friends of Animals condemns the program: "This should get people enraged," said President Priscilla Feral. "These bright green birds delight many people, should not be harmed, and should be considered as a replacement for our extinct Carolina Parakeet. The DEP has long wanted to kill any animals that are not native, as if we ourselves are natives."

Many of these South American birds, brought to the United States more three decades ago, escaped and settled along Connecticut's coast. Their large, intricate nests, which they often build on utility poles are said to be a hazard to public safety. Yet the electric company only notes two incidents where nests were found at the site of a fire.

The USDA's agents who kill birds and animals at taxpayer's expense for private industry, plan to use Connecticut's program as a test case. If successful, the agency may start using similar draconian measures in other states.

Please call for an end to the sanctioned extermination of these in birds that is being subsidized by taxpayers and customers of the utility company.


The United Illuminating Company
UIL Holdings Corporation
157 Church Street
P.O. Box 1564
New Haven, CT 06506

Nathaniel Woodson, Chairman of the Board and CEO
Phone: 203 926-4637
Fax: 203-499-3286

USDA, Massachusetts/ Rhode Island/ Connecticut
Monte Chandler
463 West Street
Amherst, MA 01002

The Connecticut Audubon Society
Milan Bull
2325 Burr Street
Fairfield, CT 06824
203-259-6305, ext 113

Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection
Wildlife Division
Dale May
79 Elm Street
Hartford, CT 06106-5127

Related information



Since when is UI so concerned about either the health or concerns of people? One need only recall their refusal to bury the imminent hi-voltage power cables to reveal the transparency of this assertion. To quote Nathaniel Woodson, UI president and CEO "we’re going to drive harder than hell for good performance" ( Given this past disregard for the well being of others, one might conjecture that neither the lives of paying UI customers nor those of the tragic monk parakeets are conducive to his mission. Apparently his contracted for $600,000 yearly base salary is not enough for Mr. Woodson. Or, perhaps the allure of earning some 60,550 additional 'performance shares' (provided for in said agreement) is proving too much of a temptation. Or could it be that Woodson is now pinching corporate pennies due to his ill conceived dealings with the now defunct Enron...forcing others to pay with their lives for his past failures? One thing is, however, quite clear what motivates Mr. Woodson and his company, and it is not a sense of compassion for anyone or anything. That said, I do empathize with those caring and compassionate employees of UI who disagree with the current actions of their 'leadership'. Has anyone considered a protest at the UI festival of Lights in New Haven (which is ongoing each night until 9:00)? That would be a good place to get the word out.

I am terribly upset at the wanton killing of innocent creatures....Please don't kill these birds. ...We were planning a vacation to Connecticut this Spring. This afternoon we cancelled our reservations, and will be spending our money elsewhere. I will not spend one thin dime in Connecticut as long as you will kill innocent birds like this.

I think it is cruel and inhumane to kill the Quaker parrots. They are very sweet and intelligent birds that a lot of people enjoy. What will they do next, Kill cats and dogs?

Again in Connecticut, they have demonstrated how man's inhumanity to man is only exceeded by its cruelty to animals.

One who first resorts to violence is the one who has run out of ideas! How would the family of Nathaniel Woodson, the CEO of UI, react if his son or daughter said, "Dad, why are you killing these birds? Isn't there a better way?", would he rethink his decision? One of the best things I loved about Connecticut was the coast & these birds. Nathaniel has murdered Connecticut's family of birds. Squirrels can be much more destructive and they are not systematically being killed. If Nathaniel got the wrong advice from USDA, Audubon & DEP, he should admit his mistake & get better advice to save these innocent, beautiful creatures! Any birds that survive will breed & eventually come back! In the meantime, be careful when you look up! And Barbara adds: Please, please stop the killing - we can live on this good earth with all the wildlife with heartbeats.

Add my name to those outraged by these actions. Although I am from California, Connecticut will not recieve any support from me if this action is carried out. Indeed the whole state will be tainted by such inappropriate activites. jc

The town in Texas where I live has recently had a similar situation. There were groups of small parrots (not sure exactly which species) and also Pearl and Lutino cockatiels nesting on utility poles along a stretch of road near my home. ... I was watching a piece on the news where the utility companies were being petitioned by the locals to discontinue the extermination of some exotic birds which had taken up residence on poles which supported the large electrical transformers (obviously for the heat that they put out). Immediately I thought, I hope they don't find the ones here in my area, because then they might....and to my horror the very pictures being shown were of the nests right in my area, as I recognized the buildings and the street names. Many nests were destroyed, and many adult and fledgeling birds were killed. The people in the area were successful in stopping the killing at leaast for now, as I have recently driven past and seen that there are still some nests, and new ones have been built as well. As far as I know there is still legislation pending; (YES, THE UTILITY COMPANIES, TELEPHONE AND ELECTRICITY, ARE ACTUALLY FIGHTING FOR THE "RIGHT" TO KILL THESE MAGNIFICENT CREATURES!!!) In their estimation somehow it is more "cost effective" (because it is, after all, only about the money) to spend tens of thousands of dollars on extermination, rather than a few thousand to build protective barriers around the transformers. It sounds too much like a thirst for killing to me, and nothing more. I know that the climate here in Texas is a lot less extreme than in CT, especially in winter and by nature these animals are more acustomed to the heat and humnidity that we experience in the south. But the fact that these birds and your own Monk Parrots have been able to adapt to climates so alien to what they are indigenous to is a testament to how amazingly resilient and intelligent these creatures are. I wish your state the most success possible in stopping this senseless butchering of nature's sweetest and most gentle creatures, and I know thet you support us, if nothing else, in prayer, for our success as well. It is my belief that a quantum leap has to be acheived that will open the eyes of the political and corporate beaurocrats who give frighteningly less respect to life than to their beloved dollar. They must be reached on a level that they understand; money and votes. This obvioulsy can only be accomplished by the cooperation of the masses. Information is the key and sadly too many are not aware of this, and so many other instances also where the almighty dollar has won out over the life of innocent animals, who ironically have depended on man to conceive of ways that allow us to co-exist without their senseless and unnecessary slaughter.

I suggest that the killers of these lovely birds see the documentary "The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill" and then try to sleep at night. On second thought, everyone trying to save the parrots should see it too! It is a beautiful love story.

I don't know what's with the govering folks in Connecticut, 3 years ago they were shaking swan eggs so no more swans would be born, 2 years ago till present they have a deer hunt to kill off the deer and now they want to kill these sweet little birds. I just wish they would pick on someone their own size for a change...


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