Posted: April 16, 2012, 2:30 p.m. PST
Blu Lu is painting for conservation.
Blu Lu, a blue-throated macaw, is helping out her wild cousins by painting for conservation. The macaw, trained by Barbara Heidenreich of Good Bird, Inc., is a member of a genetically diverse flock of blue-throated macaws that are cared for at the Bird Endowment in Texas. They are maintained in the event their wild cousins encounter disaster and disappear forever. Blu Lu’s artwork will help raise funds to save the blue-throated macaws in the wild.
So how did Blu Lu learn how to paint? “We started with just touching the handle of the brush at first,” Heidenreich said. “Over time she learned to hold the brush, touch it to paper, and eventually add more strokes. Her training is based in positive reinforcement. This kind and gentle method of teaching creates eager participants. Blu Lu flies right over when she sees the painting supplies are out.”
An African grey parrot, as painted by Blu Lu.
Original pieces will be raffled off via the bird conservation fundraising organization Chirping Central Conservation Fund. All proceeds raised will be donated to the Bird Endowment.
The Bird Endowment is dedicated to saving blue-throated macaws. Its “Nido Adoptivo” program funds the building and monitoring of artificial nest boxes for blue-throated macaws in the wild. Competition with other species for nest sites has contributed to the macaw’s demise. Supplemental nesting has made a difference for these rare parrots.
For a chance to win an original piece of framed art painted by Blu Lu and to see a video of Blu Lu painting, visit the Chirping Central “Saving The Blues” website. For more information on blue-throated macaw conservation, visit the Bird Endowment website.