‘Hello, hello’: birdnappers steal talking macaws

Worth about $7000 each … a blue and gold macaw. Stolen and returned last year … Lisa Barrett with her macaw Lotto.
Nanjing Night Net

Thieves left a trail of feathers across a car park when they stole two birds each worth $7000 from a pet store in north-west Sydney.

The blue and gold macaws, Zazu and Kiaria, were taken from the Kellyville Pets store about 9.30pm yesterday.

The birds can laugh – and say “hello” and “step up” – but their theft is no laughing matter.

Jes Jonkmans, Kellyville Pets’ marketing manager, said CCTV footage showed the silhouettes of two men entering the store’s aviary and taking the young macaws. The thieves were believed to have used bolt cutters to break into the aviary, Hills News reported.

“Birds are really fragile so if they are stressed or traumatised that can cause really serious health issues. Particularly the way they were taken. There was a trail of feathers through the car park so … they would have been struggling,” Ms Jonkmans said.

Ms Jonkmans said the store had been burgled before and there was an online black market for exotic birds.

Last year, blue and gold macaw Lotto, worth $7500, was returned to its Cessnock pet shop owners two months after it was taken.

“There has been a lot of theft in this local year in recent years. Generally the birds are taken interstate and sold online,” Ms Jonkmans said.

“There was a couple of customers and people that we know through the store had their birds stolen just out of their backyards. They can’t even have their bird out in the aviary in the backyard because people will jump the fence to steal them.”

The blue and gold macaws originate from Central and South America, Ms Jonkmans said.

“Over and above the value of the birds, we just want to make sure that they are safe and sound. Our staff are just devastated that they are gone.”

with Hills News

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