A tragic update to last week’s terrible animal mistreatment story: Flamingo, the pigeon that was allegedly colored pink as part of a gender reveal stunt, has died.
They are terribly saddened to inform everyone that Flamingo, their darling pink pigeon, has died, the Wild Bird Fund said on Twitter. Despite their best attempts to decrease the fumes from the dye while keeping him quiet and stable, he died in the night. They think he died as a result of ingesting the chemicals.
We are deeply sad to report that Flamingo, our sweet pink pigeon, has passed away. Despite our best efforts to reduce the fumes coming off the dye, while keeping him calm and stable, he died in the night. We believe his death was caused by inhaling the toxins.— Wild Bird Fund (@wildbirdfund) February 7, 2023
📷: Alexis Ayala pic.twitter.com/218hh6oN8P
Flamingo, a domestic king pigeon, was discovered by a good samaritan in Manhattan’s Madison Square Park. The bird was in bad condition and was sent to the non-profit Wild Bird Fund.
The pigeon had been totally pink-colored with synthetic hair dye. It’s unclear who did it or why, but the most popular notion is that the bird was colored pink as part of a gender reveal.
He doesn’t believe they’ve ever actually had a pink pigeon come into the clinic, so they were all fairly astonished, the Wild Bird Fund’s Antonio Sanchez said. They were very shocked that somebody would do anything like this.
It’s also possible that the pigeon was bought from a poultry market. He should never have been freed since he is unfit to live in the wild.
This poor youngster had it tough enough before being labeled as a domestic bird, unable to locate food in the wild, fly properly, or avoid predators, the organization posted on Twitter.
Pigeons come in many different colors, but pink isn't one of them. This king pigeon was deliberately dyed and released. 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.— Wild Bird Fund (@wildbirdfund) January 31, 2023
📷: Phyllis Tseng pic.twitter.com/SnhdIOJsHU
The Wild Bird Fund did all they could to save the bird, but they were concerned about his health. They couldn’t get the color out, and the fumes were creating lung difficulties.
One issue is that the dye has a strong stench, and they’re worried about the bird’s respiratory health, noted the scientists. Birds are very sensitive to specific smells, and this one is effectively living within a cloud. They’re also afraid that he’ll eat the chemical when preening. His health is deteriorating, and he is having difficulty swallowing.
Despite their best attempts, Flamingo succumbed to his injuries and died a few days later.
The Wild Bird Fund said on Twitter that it thanks everyone for their well wishes and several helpful recommendations. Flamingo’s narrative evoked strong emotions and piqued the curiosity of people all around the globe. They hope that telling the story of his too-short existence may help to avoid future instances of callous brutality.
Update: After giving our pink guest time to stabilize, our team tried several methods to remove the dye, which we believe is hair dye, with limited success. One problem is that the dye has a strong odor, and we're concerned for the bird's respiratory health.— Wild Bird Fund (@wildbirdfund) February 2, 2023
📷: Alexis Ayala pic.twitter.com/JaBclYgioz
It should be common sense not to color a bird pink for something as insignificant as a gender reveal prank, and it was the hazardous dye that produced health difficulties that Flamingo could not overcome.
However, the organization hopes that his tale will serve as a lesson to others not to release pet birds into the wild. Flamingo was unprepared to exist on his own and would have perished if he hadn’t been discovered, even without the pink color.
The tale of Flamingo attracted many people, and although he died horribly and pointlessly, maybe the attention will have an influence and make the world a safer place for other birds like him.
“Rest in peace, sweet bird,” commented the Wild Bird Fund.
Rest in peace, sweet bird.— Wild Bird Fund (@wildbirdfund) February 7, 2023
Rest in peace, Flamingo—we pray you’re at peace now, and we hope you’re restored to your real colors wherever you are.