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The Real Lucky

Download the real story of Lucky as published in 2004 in the Animal Protection Institute magazine Animal Issues.

Watch the story of the real Lucky” Clip from the film “The People and Parrots of Wild Indonesia. Narrated by Bonnie Zimmermann:

From the author of the book “Lucky”: I first met Lucky while traveling in the “Spice Islands” with the Indonesian Parrot Project, a U.S. non-profit parrot conservation group, and Yayasan Wallacea, an Indonesian non-governmental organization focused on sustainable community development.

Lucky was trapped in the wild and had been chained to a perch (a common practice in Indonesia) for more than a year. Lucky had been fed a diet of consisting primarily rice and sweet tea – a lorikeets natural diet consists of nectar and fruit.

Lucky’s “owner” had acquired him as a gift and was not in the business of trapping or selling birds. We acquired Lucky with the intent to release him on the island of Seram* near the villages of Sawai and Masihulan where parrot conservation projects are active.

We soon discovered that because Lucky had been chained for so long his flight muscles had weakened. Without the ability to fly he would not survive in the wild. We could not bear the thought of allowing Lucky to spend the rest of his life chained to a perch as a “pet,” so we decided to free Lucky from the chain with the hope that he would remain in the protection of the village until he was strong enough to leave. 

Lucky did remain around the village, climbing and chewing on trees and regaining his flying ability. A month later, Lucky left the village for the forest.

Lucky, and other birds like him, were the inspiration for the creation of a rehabilitation and release center aptly named “kembali bebas” – Indonesian for “return to freedom” – which has since been established on the island of Seram where Lucky was released.

For more information about Indonesian Parrot Project and how you can help, visit  http://indonesian-parrot-project.org/

* Seram is the largest of the "Spice Islands" in the remote eastern region of Indonesia. Two villages on the northern coast of Seram, Sawai (Muslim) and Masihulan (Christian), live side by side in harmony with a combined population of 1,500 people.