Laurella Desborough: Advocate for Exotic Birds and Aviculturists
Laurella Desborough has been involved with birds her whole life, and involved with exotic birds since 1979. Presently she raises eclectus parrots, writes articles about birds and their care, and monitors state and federal regulations and legislation in the U.S. regarding birds and animals. This reflects a life long interest in nature and animals, both domestic and wild. Growing up on a farm in the Midwest provided many opportunities to work with a variety of domestic animals and to learn about wild animals.
Since her special animal interest is parrots, the need to know and understand proposed and existing regulations became important. Over the years her involvement in these activities has included volunteer work as Co-Chair and Newsletter Editor for the Contra Costa Avian Society, and eventually, the position of President of the national American Federation of Aviculture. She was Co-Founder and Co-Chair of the Avian Research Fund, a service organization which presented two-day educational seminars and published a proceedings for a period of six years with the goal of contributing to the education of bird breeders and avian veterinarians and raising funds for conservation and avian medical research.
As part of her work to improve the management of exotic birds, she was Co-founder (and is presently a Board member) of the Model Aviculture Program, (www.modelaviculture.org) the only voluntary inspection and certification service for bird breeding facilities in the U.S. Presently she is Legislative Chair for the national bird organization, Avicultural Society of America (www.asabirds.org), and Legislative Chair for the NAIA Trust (www.naiatrust.org).
She has focused on a breeding program to produce purebred eclectus parrots of four subspecies, written articles on their care and management, and researched the background of the various subspecies through study of skins at the Museum of Natural History in New York. She co-authored the first book on eclectus parrots published in 1988. She has made presentations at national avicultural conferences on legislation and on eclectus parrots and has written numerous articles on birds and on regulation regarding birds and animals.
All of these activities are the result of a lifetime of interest in birds and animals. Her focus is on producing healthy quality birds, providing accurate information to clients and other bird breeders, and working in the regulatory and legislative arenas to promote animal welfare while protecting the interests of animal owners and breeders.