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A Simmering Summer

By Laura Doering

(Photo left to right: Crystal Apilado, web editor; Erin O’Brien, editorial intern; Jessica Pineda, Bird Talk’s assistant editor; Melissa Kauffman, editorial director; Laura Doering, Bird Talk’s editor; and Katie Ingmire, editorial intern) The editors of BIRD TALK and had a little help this summer (OK, a lot of help!) thanks to interns Erin O’Brien and Katie Ingmire. These two editorial dynamos reported on the latest breaking bird news, copy-edited articles, and, in essence, learned a whole new world of bird. 

Remember the first day of primary school when the teacher had you write an essay about your summer? Well, if I were a BIRD TALK editor back then it would go something like this:

First up was a trip to St. Louis for the American Federation of Aviculture (AFA). This was easily one of the hottest cities I’ve ever been to. Air-conditioning has to be up there in terms of greatest inventions, and even better was the assortment of speakers that kept everyone indoors. I did make a quick trip to see St. Louis’ famous arch and, being a bird person, I couldn’t help but wonder how many birds flying by this enormous architecture marvel stopped to perch and enjoy the scenic view.

Next up was the Association of Avian Veterinarians (AAV) conference in Savannah, Georgia. Savannah is a breathtaking city, filled with gorgeous oak trees streaming with moss, giving it an ethereal look. I picked up a large clump of moss and imagined some bird thinking, “Score!” as it retrieved it for nesting material, as it was quite sturdy yet flexible.

AAV always makes my head spin. Although I made it through biology in school, it was by no means a cake walk. So here I was surrounded by avian veterinarians talking in a language only other veterinarians can fully appreciate. This conference has a mind-boggling speaker’s schedule, with talks by researchers and veterinarians from all around the globe going on simultaneously over the course of a week. It’s reassuring to see how large and involved the avian veterinarian community is in sharing information that all our birds benefit from.

BIRD TALK, along with Lafeber, co-sponsored AAV’s movie night. This year’s movie was “Rare Bird,” and the preview was a slide show of our “Watch the Birdie” and Birds USA contest photos. I loved seeing so many veterinarians become giddy upon seeing silly bird photos or hearing happy sighs from the audience over the cute bird photos. Rest assure your avian veterinarian loves your pet as much as you do.

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