Gender reveal parties have become trendy in recent years, with parents-to-be finding unique ways of revealing the gender of their child by revealing something either pink or blue.
But one apparent gender reveal stunt has put a poor pigeon’s life in danger, after someone dyed the bird pink.
The king pigeon was found by a good samaritan in Madison Square Park in Manhattan. The bird was in poor shape, and was brought to the nonprofit Wild Bird Fund.
The group says the pigeon was artificially dyed pink with hair dye. It’s not clear who did it or for what reason, but the prevailing theory is that the bird was dyed pink as part of a gender reveal.
“I don’t think we’ve ever really had a pink pigeon come into the clinic, so we were all pretty surprised,” Antonio Sanchez of the Wild Bird Fund told ABC 7 New York. “We were honestly disgusted that someone would do this.”
They say that the pigeon, who they have named Flamingo, is a domestic pigeon who was likely purchased at a poultry market. The pigeon should not have been released into the wild, as it is not equipped to survive.
“As a domestic bird unable to find food in the wild, fly well or escape predators, this poor kid had it bad enough before being dyed,” the group wrote on Twitter.
While the fund said Flamingo was “safely in care,” they worry the dye is taking a toll on his health, saying he “shows signs of longterm malnutrition” despite being only a fledgling.
In an update, the Wild Bird Fund says they have been trying hard to remove the dye, with “limited success.” The dye could cause longterm problems for the poor bird.
“One problem is that the dye has a strong odor, and we’re concerned for the bird’s respiratory health,” the explained. “Birds are very sensitive to certain fumes, and this one is essentially living inside a cloud. We’re also concerned about him ingesting the chemical through preening. His condition is weak, and he’s struggling to keep food down.”
They write that they have Flamingo on heat, oxygen and subcutaneous fluids, and are providing medication to “counteract the effects of the toxin on his digestive system.”
As poor Flamingo fights for his life, the Wild Bird Fund hopes his story serves as a stark reminder to never dye a bird for any reason, nor to release domestic birds in the wild.
While it should be common sense not to dye a pigeon with hair dye, their warming extends to once-common practices like dove reveals at weddings. They have no survival instincts and will starve or be preyed on. “Dove releases in all forms are cruel,” they write. “Please celebrate your life events peacefully without harming others.”
This poor bird — we hope Flamingo pulls through after this cruel, unnecessary stunt left him helpless and covered in dye.
It’s a reminder to treat animals all animals with the respect they deserve. Please share this story and keep this pigeon in your thoughts 💕