Adoption Process and Requirements

We’re delighted you are interested in adopting a bird from The Gabriel Foundation! We have many wonderful birds that are just waiting to find their family and start a new life.

What is the adoption process?

There are a number of steps involved in making the adoption process a successful and positive experience for both you and your potential new bird companion(s):

  • A completed adoption application
    • We use this valuable information to help us find a bird that fits with your personality, lifestyle, experience and expectations.
  • Completion of the Beyond Bird Basics class
    • This is an online class that you can take at your own pace and you will continue to have access to these educational materials for reference in the future.
  • Take a tour of our aviary and adoption center
    • We ask that all potential adopters take a tour of our aviary and adoption center in Elizabeth, CO, where most of our birds are housed. This will allow you to see a variety of species of birds, see enrichment and housing options and get an idea how the birds are fed and cared for on a daily basis.
  • Meet the birds!
    • It may take awhile for you to “connect” with a bird, so it’s possible that multiple visits over time will be required. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t find your new companion right away, or if the bird you have your heart set on doesn’t seem interested. It can take time to earn trust and form a relationship with them.
  • Home visit
    • Once you have chosen the bird (or birds) that you wish to adopt, we will do a home visit to help you get everything ready for your new feathered companion. If you are not in our local area, we will be happy to work with you to find a suitable substitute for an in-person home visit.
  • If you have birds already, a copy of their veterinary test results must be provided
    • Every bird that comes into The Gabriel Foundation is screened for viruses and general health. We require birds in the home of the potential adopter to meet those same standards – for the health and safety of our birds as well as theirs. The medical requirements have been set up by TGF’s primary avian veterinary partners, Dr. Kris Ahlgrim and Dr. Jerry Labonde.

What are the fees for adopting a bird?

There is an initial application fee, which covers a 1-yr membership to The Gabriel Foundation (or a 1-yr extension if you are already a member), your choice of one of a group of selected educational avian books or DVDs (up to $25 value) and the Beyond Bird Basics online course materials and quizzes ($40 value).

The actual adoption fee varies from bird to bird and ranges from $50 to over $1000. Many factors are taken into account, including the species, age, health, and overall adopt-ability of the bird. Once you have chosen a specific bird (or birds) we can give you an exact fee. In general, you can expect to pay an adoption fee that is approximately 50% of what you would pay from a private party or retail operation.

Why do we charge an application fee on top of the adoption fee?

We occasionally get this question from potential adopters and thought it would be helpful to provide an explanation. First of all, we are committed to making every adoption a successful one, for both the bird and the adopter. This fee helps to cover the costs of our educational materials and provide you with the best possible start to a life with your new bird.

In addition, your decision to apply and pay the fee tells us that you are serious about adopting a bird from us and committed to the process. In the past, we had a significant number of people who would apply and spend time visiting with the birds, but never followed through on adopting. As a not-for-profit organization, we simply do not have the resources available to dedicate large amounts of time for this. It wasn’t fair to our staff or the birds.

How long does the adoption process take?

Generally, depending on how quickly you “connect” with a bird, you can expect the adoption process to take between 6-10 weeks for the bird to come to your home. There is a 90-day probationary adoption period initially during which time you will be asked to send regular reports to us on how the adjustment is going. At the end of the 90 days, assuming all is going well and you wish to make the bird a permanent member of your household, permanent adoption paperwork will be sent for you to complete.

It seems like The Gabriel Foundation makes the adoption process very difficult! Why is this?

It is not our intent to frustrate anyone or make it impossible to add a bird to your family. We take the responsibility for each bird in our care very seriously and we want them to be successful in their new home. We take time to make sure each adopter has all the tools needed for long term success. We are invested in the lifetime of each bird that comes through The Gabriel Foundation and we appreciate that you are taking the time to commit to that same level of care.

The combined years of experience we all bring to The Gabriel Foundation ranging from veterinary medicine, aviculture, companion parrot care and parrot welfare has helped us to develop this protocol that sets the birds (and you!) up for the best chance of success.

Why don’t you adopt out any Hyacinth macaws?

Read about our Hyacinth macaw adoption policy.

Heavy metal serenade bird cage style
Heavy metal - bird cage style
Thanks to volunteers Marty K and his son for getting a big part of our cage scrap pile where it needed to be. Time to make certain that dangerous and poorly made cages ended up where they belong! 1500# of unusable cages brought us $78.34; vehicle, trailer - free; labor-free; gas $40. Net: $38.34.
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More of an eyesore. Oh for some huge cotttonwood trees.

Do you have an article you can share about the effects of bad cages on birds? Symptoms etc, of lead zinc toxicity etc. Also, how to test your cage? I would love something good to share with clients. (I have been wanting to look up an article, but keep forgetting! This reminded me and I thought you may have a good one! Thanks!!!

uncanny resemblance to how macaws pick something up - then throw it somewhere else!

not to mention the valuable real estate this stuff was occupying!

It was quite fun tossing old cages in a pile and the satisfaction of the crashing sound of metal to metal, and playing Frisbee with cage trays hitting the concrete back wall. We tried to see how far we could toss cages up into the pile. Icing on the cake was the big steel parrot beak crunching and squashing and tossing.

And the good news is the recycled steel could be used to make new parrot cages.

T. Rex!!!

Thanks Marty K and son :)

Good

Wow

Marty Koenig

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For Cockatoosday we're sharing some facts about the Cockatoos at TGF.

1. We currently have 41 Umbrella cockatoos (31 of which are males), 12 Moluccan cockatoos, 5 Bare-eyed cockatoos, 12 Sulphur Crested cockatoos, 6 Goffin's cockatoos and one Ducorp's cockatoo available for adoption. This equals 77 Cockatoos, almost 30% of our available birds. We have some cockatoos not available for adoption including Quigley, a Major Mitchell (Leadbetter) and Simon, an elderly Galah.
2. Most of the Cockatoos now onsite entered our care when they were between 15-21 years old.
3. The oldest Cockatoo we have available for adoption is 42 years old and the youngest is 5 years old.
4. The most common names we see for Cockatoos that come to us are Fred, Angel, Joey, Baby, Peaches, Sidney/Sydney, and Casper.
5. When a Cockatoo enters our care, they usually make friends rather quickly. Most of our Cockatoos are friends with another of the same gender. Some select more unusual friends. Dakota, U2 & Fred, OWA and Quigley with Sonny, a male Senegal.
6. In 2016, we adopted out a total of 214 birds, 21 were cockatoos. In 2016, 2 cockatoos, one Umbrella and one medium sulphur Crested were returned to us from different adopters.
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For Cockatoosday were sharing some facts about the Cockatoos at TGF.

1. We currently have 41 Umbrella cockatoos (31 of which are males), 12 Moluccan cockatoos, 5 Bare-eyed cockatoos, 12 Sulphur Crested cockatoos, 6 Goffins cockatoos and one Ducorps cockatoo available for adoption. This equals 77 Cockatoos, almost 30% of our available birds. We have some cockatoos not available  for adoption including Quigley, a Major Mitchell (Leadbetter) and Simon, an elderly Galah. 
2. Most of the Cockatoos now onsite entered our care when they were between 15-21 years old.
3. The oldest Cockatoo we have available for adoption is 42 years old and the youngest is 5 years old.  
4. The most common names we see for Cockatoos that come to us are Fred, Angel, Joey, Baby, Peaches, Sidney/Sydney, and Casper.
5. When a Cockatoo enters our care, they usually make friends rather quickly.  Most of our Cockatoos are friends with another of the same gender. Some select more unusual friends. Dakota, U2 & Fred, OWA and Quigley with Sonny, a male Senegal.
6. In 2016, we adopted out a total of 214 birds, 21 were cockatoos. In 2016, 2 cockatoos, one Umbrella  and one medium sulphur Crested  were returned to us from different adopters.

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For those of you interested in adopting from us, visit thegabrielfoundation.org/adoption/ and learn about the process. We do adopt out of state. Cockatoo adoption fees range from $350 to $500. All birds have undergone a complete avian wellness exam, are microchipped, and are housed to stay social with people and other birds. If adoption isn't realistic, we would love sponsors for our flock, especially our cockatoos. We would be thrilled for your support and that you have undertaken the care for one of our flock. There are many ways to support us, so learn more at thegabrielfoundation.org/donate/

Why so many cockatoo's?

I love cockatoos! I just think they're the best. I haven't met one I didn't like yet and that includes some that didn't get along with other people. Lol.

I really want an umbrella cockatoo! I have a Grey from you guys. She needs a friend. But we should move to a bigger house first 😪

Thank you for taking in these wonderful birds. They are lucky to be in a great place you have.

Kat has to ALWAYS say hi to the conures when he first comes out. He likes to make sure his flock well ;)

Wow, 77 cockatoos must be capable of creating quite a racket!

I have 3 c2s, and 1 m2. They are no problems other than my mc2 is constant screamer. But the rest are OK. Just have to provide them with lots of chew toys.

We would love a Cockatoo but my dad absolutely loves your pair of Military Macaws.

Brandee Sounds like a place you would love 😊

I'll take em!!!!!!!!!💙

all my friends and all beautiful

Fred Fred

Fabulous & interesting post!

Britney Hayward....adopt a new friend

That's interesting, because when I visited the facility in Emma years ago I thought you had about 75 cockatoos way back then! But that was my guess - I couldn't help but notice that so many needed homes.

How can we adopt them? I live in NC. How much is adoption fee?

Wish I could help them all.....I'm old and they would outlive me...

I love all the TGF 'toos! Even M2 Jessy who gave me a nasty bite! :-)

Yonah Two Bears

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3 days ago

The Gabriel Foundation

Hi, my name is Kiwi. I’m a handsome Blue-Fronted Amazon around the age of 44. I may be an older guy, but I have the energy of a teenager and still have many years ahead of me. My family gave me up because they moved and had a new baby. I would prefer a home where I'm the only bird, so I can have all the attention for myself. One of my favorite activities is learning new behaviors, because I am very food motivated. With some time working together as teacher (me) and student (you), and of course my favorite food treats, I know you and I can learn target training, and with your help I’ll be happy to touch targets, turn on a perch, and wave my foot on cue. They say you can't teach an old dog new tricks, but no one ever said you can't teach an old parrot new tricks. ... See MoreSee Less

Hi, my name is Kiwi. I’m a handsome Blue-Fronted Amazon around the age of 44.  I may be an older guy, but I have the energy of a teenager and still have many years ahead of me.  My family gave me up because they moved and had a new baby.  I would prefer a home where Im the only bird, so I can have all the attention for myself.  One of my favorite activities is learning new behaviors, because I am very food motivated.  With some time working together as teacher (me) and student (you), and of course  my favorite food treats, I know you and I can learn target training, and with your help I’ll be happy to touch targets, turn on a perch, and wave my foot on cue.  They say you cant teach an old dog new tricks, but no one ever said you cant teach an old parrot new tricks.

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I would love to have him here with me. My Orange Wing Amazon crossed the Rainbow Bridge the day after Christmas at the young age of only 32 because her previous owners let her suffer with Asper for years then gave her to someone who knows nothing about birds and he called me to take her. I only had her for 2.5 years, but I know she was happy and getting the medical care she needed.

I am a new parrot mama. She is a beauty, a Meyer . We are learning what each other likes. ( ok, to be honest it's mostly what she like). Before I purchased her I ask my daughter if when I become to old to take proper care of her she would. She agreed which gave me peace of mind. She has a sun conure.

I wish I could have him. I'm in Wisconsin though :(. My bird Dexter is old I love older birds

You can come live with me and my 3 babies. How far are you from Gainesville FL

I would love to get him my parakeet just died on Saturday and would love to get another bird.

Beautiful bird...So upsetting that people would give up their bird (a member of family) because of a move and a baby...Didn't they even think about this before acquriing this beautiful bird...I hope this beautiful bird finds a forever home..I can see if someone is very ill and can't take care of their baby anymore.

What is wrong with people? I'm beginning to think we should have to go through a very thorough screening process before we're allowed to keep a parrot from any source.

Such a beautiful bird. I hope he finds a forever home, instead of one that just gives him up because he's "inconvenient". Breaks my heart 💔

So so so sweet! I would adopt him in a heartbeat if I didn't already have two eclectus. They are already a handful but I love them more than anything. I would give him a home in a minute if I didn't already have parrots. This boy is so so so sweet wish I knew someone to give him a forever home. With lots of love. That's what he really really really deserves. Not someone who'll give him up just because of changes and situation someone who loves him and will adapt because they love him and they love their new situation no matter what. Poor kiwi he deserves more and a loving home where he is greatly appreciated. God bless you kiwi I hope you find your forever home soon.

The long life expectancy of parrots is probably rarely considered when deciding to bring one home as a pet. I adore my own but think it's time the long-lived ones be banned as pets. How many people commit to 40 plus years with these creatures? Not enough shelters. Very sad.

Poor baby, would you leave your child?

Love him. He can come to my house I live in Minnesota

I love his face!

He is very likable guy, I have met him.

I want him he can live with us for sure

Awwww, Kiwi, you're gorgeous, so sweet!

Shared!

Shame on them !!!

Typical story - so sad :(

Kelsey Rooney!!!

Buck Healy

I would love to have a chat with the people that gave him up. They would not like me.

Merry Tubb this is the site and peanut's cousin is up for adoption! ❤️😢

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