More than 520 exotic birds of different breeds will be showing off their plumage at the 109th Annual Bird Show.
To be held at Ormiston Senior College on July 7 and 8, the show is hosted by the Auckland Metro Bird Club, one of the oldest clubs in New Zealand.
This year there are a handful of young members showing off their winged friends, including 14-year-old Renee Murphy—one of the five junior members of the club. The Saint Kentigern College student says that she’s had quite a few finches and quails since she was little.
However, this is the first bird show she is entering in the junior under-16 category.
She still hasn’t decided on the birds that will be entering the competition.
“I will bring four- five birds to the club and get advice from the more experienced members on which ones to enter in the competition,” she says.
“It’s a really good hobby if you love animals and you get to meet really wonderful people.
“Everyone in the club has been very helpful and is happy to share information with me.”
The Year 10 student has a collection of around 40 birds in an aviary at a lifestyle block she lives on.
The aviary houses a colourful and exotic mix of zebra finches, Bengalese finches, Gouldian finches, Chinese quail, lovebirds and cordon-bleus.
“I couldn’t tell the genders of some of the birds and they helped me out,” she says.
While Renee is a bit partial to a particular bird that is “quite fearless and gorgeous” who loves sitting in her hair and even occasionally likes to bite, she says that all birds are very different.
“I love their singing, the bird song and the brilliant colours. Sometimes it’s lovely to watch lovebirds look after each other.”
Renee makes it a point to attend bird events but doesn’t take her birds for showing mainly “because it would stress them out”.
Right now she is excited that she has two pairs of love birds sitting on eggs. “It’s the first time,” she smiles.
Senior member of the bird club Dave Nicholson says that the annual bird show is now an established event in east Auckland and this year they will also have a fish display. There will be birds on sale as well.