We continue to support efforts to provide legal protections for parrots in Pierce and other counties, and to promote the welfare of birds.
Beginning in the early 1980's, Martha and her husband John Scudder owned and ran a parrot breeding farm, M&J Enterprises, in Roy, Washington. John Scudder passed away in 2002. Martha Scudder still owns the farm, now called Scudder's Parrot Depot, largely run by her live-in boyfriend, Robert Vincent. By Martha's family's own testimony, the facility has been in decline for a number of years, and Bob Vincent's arrival has not improved matters.
Picture taken March, 2006
Life at Parrot Depot: dark cages in poorly sheltered ramshackle barns
Parrots—universally recognized for their intelligence—are farmed in utterly degrading conditions.
We have created this web site not just to try and help set things right at Parrot Depot, but to raise the issues involved, which extend to other farms and to the role of county and state governments in the bird-breeding industry. Despite public perception that widespread protections are in place to prevent animal cruelty, the facts are that laws and ordinances do not apply equally to all situations, types of pets, or animals in general. Birds such as parrots are often left woefully unprotected, inviting exploitation and abuse.
We want to insure our readers do not confuse Scudder'sParrot Depot with Scudders' Happy Hookbills Ranch, owned and run by Martha's son and daughter-in-law, John and Kathy. While we cannot speak to motives, it was after confrontations with Robert Vincent that John and Kathy (whose property adjoins Martha's, and who have made attempts to assist Martha) were served a restraining order preventing them from coming on to Parrot Depot property.
“Zone of Despair”
This article, written by Larry Gallawa, details how he became involved with fighting for humane treatment of parrots in Pierce County, WA and his subsequent frustrating and heartbreaking journey. His efforts to obtain help for these suffering birds were repeatedly blocked at every turn. It seemed that anyone in a position of authority whose responsibility it was to protect these magnificent animals could only be described as apathetic—at best. Click on the link following to read Larry's story about the initial events surrounding this travesty and you'll understand why he titled it “The Zone of Despair” [here»].
As this case has taken on visibility—including an unsuccessful attempt by Parrot Depot (Martha Scudder) to sue Larry Gallawa—the amount of disinformation and speculation on “both sides” has been increasing. (Documents from Scudder vs. Gallawa are accessible through thetab above.)
Our focus has been to build a repository of all publicly available, relevant documents. In doing so, we hope to assure that every interested party has available the most complete, current, and accurate information possible. This includes not only those directly involved with Scudder Parrot Depot case, but those interested in understanding the issues surrounding it and also concerning the care and needs of parrots in general.
We have also gathered relevant news, accessible through thetab above. The most comprehensive and informative of these is the article “Parrots in Peril,” written by respected investigative journalist Mira Tweti, who has written extensively on parrots and investigated the Parrot Depot situation. After it was published, local residents—now alerted to conditions—began to contact their officials demanding action. Our hope is that this public scrutiny will help improve conditions at Parrot Depot and other “bird farms.”
Where the facts are clear, they are stated as such. Where opinion or a single source—in cases wishing to remain anonymous—is involved, we have used phrases such as “alleged,” “allegedly,” or “presumably” to qualify comments. The outcome of Scudder v. Gallawa, in favor of Larry Gallawa and confirmed on appeal, certainly counters Martha Scudder's and Bob Vincent's assertions they are simply victims of "personal attacks" (quoted from their web site, also echoed in comments by their lawyer, Jack Maichel). Nevertheless, to insure our comments are read based on the facts and not their source, we have kept our comments anonymous because we want this website to focus solely on issues surrounding the welfare of parrots, not on personalities.
We invite those just seeking more information to browse the document collection.
We believe it speaks for itself.
We believe it speaks for itself.