Long Island Parrot Society

...dedicated to responsible bird ownership through education and example.

Long Island Parrot Society
P.O. Box 2754
North Babylon, NY  11703
(631) 957-1100


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Never give your bird avocado or chocolate -- they are both toxic!

This page highlights some important information that has been found about some dangerous products on the market that may harm or even kill your birds...

The product information you see on here was submitted to our site by concerned bird lovers everywhere.

joparot2.gif (6693 bytes)

ball70.gif (523 bytes)  LIST OF TOXIC PLANTS
ball70.gif (523 bytes)  LIST OF NON-TOXIC PLANTS
ball70.gif (523 bytes)  TEFLON & NON-STICK COOKWARE
ball70.gif (523 bytes)  IS THERE A KILLER IN YOUR KITCHEN? (article)

ball70.gif (523 bytes)  PARROT FIRST AID KIT:

 ? Styptic powder

 ? Corn flour

 ? Saline eye wash

 ? Bandage material- co flex

 ? Gauze pads

 ? Gum orthodontic wax for braces

 ? 5” locking forceps

 ? Avix soother spray or ointment

 ? Transport carrier

 ? Phone number of exotic/avian vet and emergency hospital

Read On...

Stainsafe (submitted 9/03)

A stain and water-repelling product similar to Dupont's Stainmaster. 3M Corporation reportedly received numerous reports, going back decades, of bird deaths caused by exposure to the original formulation of its Scotchgard stain and water repellent. The active ingredient in that product, PFOS, was forced from the market by EPA in 2000 (See EWG's report on PFCs on our main Web site and the Scotchgard story in our Chemical Industry Archives.)

Gel Candles - February 2002

Three incidents of gel candles causing explosions, house fires and 3rd degree burns have been reported to LIPS.  DO NOT USE THESE!

Sources of Indoor Air Pollution
Aerosol sprays; even pump sprays disperse droplets throughout your home.
Lead dust from sanding lead-based paint
Art supplies, glue, correction fluid
Dry cleaning chemicals
Scented candles
Fabric deodorizers
Air fresheners: spray, solid, plug-in, powder
Shoe polish & waterproofing compounds
Cooking fumes
Heated, non-stick cookware and appliances such as Teflon®
Cleaning products
Furniture polish (Use lemon oil instead.)
Moth balls
Pet dander, fur, feathers
Perfume, hair spray, cosmetics
Remodeling products
Don't depend on air filters and purifiers to remove toxic gases or fumes from the air.  Be sure your home is adequately ventilated.  Always follow manufacturer's directions when using products or appliances.  Labels will usually not indicate whether products are harmful to birds because most products are not routinely tested on birds.

PRODUCT:   Scented Candles and other...
Following is some specific info on scented candles, followed by a list of indoor pollutants and a source for a free booklet on indoor air quality.
According to an article in the Indoor Air Quality Review, problems associated with scented candles may result from the minute particulate matter dispersed by the candles.  Essential oils and chemicals are added to these candles to create the scents.  These are dispersed into the air as the candles burn.  The inhaled particles are small enough to pass through the human body's 'filter system' (lungs) and become lodged in the tissues.   Grey marks, called 'ghosting' may appear on interior walls when scented candles are used.
The UC Berkeley Wellness Letter (Feb. 2001) says that "Few studies have been done on whether burning or incense have any effect on human health.  Most studies have simply looked at compounds released into the air.  These include some potent pollutants including benzene, toluene, formaldehyde and polyaromatic hydrocarbons.  Nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide are also by-products of combustion.  Burning candles can release fine particles as well as soot and even heavy metals from certain cores and pigments.   Avoid candles with metal core wicks because they release lead.  Keep rooms well ventilated."
Because birds have complex and sensitive respiratory systems, I'd advise against using scented candles in closed areas where birds are present. There have been some reports of birds dying after exposure to scented or 'room freshening' candles. Remember, household products are not routinely tested on birds, therefore manufacturers cannot certify that they are harmful or harmless to birds. If you err, please do so on the side of caution.
Susan Chamberlain, President
Long Island Parrot Society of NY, Inc. (3/01)
For a free copy of The Inside Story A Guide to Indoor Air Quality (Publication #450), send your name, address and request to:
Publication Request
Office of Information & Public Affairs
US Consumer Product Safety Commission
Washington DC 20207

PRODUCT: "Foie Gras" (duck/geese liver)

An incoming email from flh@all-creatures.org (Mary and Frank Hoffman), reads: 

"We have just published a short article with pictures about the pain and suffering connected with the production of Foie Gras."


"Please use it in any way you can to help the animals."

PRODUCT: "4 The Birds"
By Ken & Carol Highfill of Birds-n-Ways
It has been reported to us that a product, "4 The Birds" is being sold as a bird repellent. It is marketed by J.T. Eaton and is manufactured by Bird Control International. The EPA# is 8254-1-56. It seems that the major ingredient is Polybutene. It is a clear, thick resinous material that is applied with a caulking gun. It is to be applied to window ledges and other places that birds might land where they are not wanted. Instead of repelling them, the birds become "stuck" in the goo (like mice in sticky traps). As the birds struggle to escape, they become further trapped by this resinous material. Their beaks, face, wings, feathers and feet become coated with this sticky material. Even if they manage to escape, with their feathers coated with this sticky substance, they are unable to fly.
One veterinarian is treating several of these cases. The substance is impossible to remove safely. It does not come off with soap and water, but requires mineral spirits which is toxic to birds. The birds may suffer permanent disabilities. This product is not a repellent.
Veterinarian Linda Pesek and a number of concerned people are trying to get this product removed from the EPA approved list. For this purpose data is needed, documenting incidents. We ask that you check with others in your area to determine 1) if and where the product is sold around you and 2) if others have experienced incidents with this product. We would welcome all information on injuries and bad experiences. The data gathered will be used when contacting the EPA to object to this product being licensed.
Please help the birds. Email your information to birdsnways@birdsnways.com. Be sure to warn others NOT to use "4 The Birds."

PRODUCT: "Febreze"
The active ingredient in Febreze is Zinc Chloride which is very dangerous to use around birds. While Febreze labeling claims to be safe around pets, they [Proctor & Gamble] have now admitted they did not think about birds.
Proctor and Gamble updated the Febreze web site to say the product is safe around birds if used "as directed". They also took OUT zinc chloride. While they say it's safe they also recommend taking birds out of the room and ventilating it before putting them back. http://www.febreze.com/pet.html


The following posts were taken from an Internet Avian list. While the deadly results of using Febreze are as of this time unsubstantiated, it is far better to be safe rather than sorry...

Subject: New Deadly Product

A bird owner with several birds passed along a recent tragedy. Her husband was sneaking a smoke outside and decided to cover up the smell by spraying his clothes with Febreze. He was around the corner from her birds, about 12 feet away. Unfortunately, her birds began showing all the classic signs of lung damage and one succumbed after a valiant fight.

She will have a necropsy done just to verify and the other birds seem to be recovering somewhat after being exposed to fresh air. They may not be out of the woods yet but their breathing appears normal and they are eating.

Please think at least a dozen times before using ANY aerosol product in your home. Air currents can carry them to your birds making them as lethal as a bullet.

Subject: More Info on Febreze

The manufacturer of the product has called the owner of the birds mentioned in the previous post. The active ingredient in Febreze is Zinc Chloride which is very dangerous to use around birds. While Febreze labeling claims to be safe around pets, they said they did not test it around birds. Unfortunately, more birds have succumbed.


Teflon® on your non-stick pans and your self cleaning oven are DEADLY! It does NOT have to be burned to emit the toxic fumes - overheating them kills! Since the toxic fumes are carried by air currents in your home, all birds may not be affected. Opening all windows when using Teflon® products could cause them to waft quickly through the house affecting birds in far off rooms so opening windows does not help.
Whatever it takes to clean a pot is not worth killing your pets. If you have been lucky and have been using your Teflon® or PTFE coated products despite the warnings, remember that is exactly what you have been...LUCKY.


For more Teflon® warnings see: Georgette's Corner & Teflon!

See also: Environmental Working Group (Teflon Kills Birds)

The following 2 messages came off one of the bird sites "Bird Hotline." Feel free to visit them at:
Warning about OFF Insect repellent! I wanted to let people know of an experience I recently had. Last week a friend came over to hold a Bourke (Bourke's Grass Parakeet from Australia) she is planning to buy. She washed her hands like always. In less than 5 minutes he was having a seizure. I called a friend and after looking and answering questions it was realized that it was from the OFF Insect repellent she had sprayed on her shirt. Either he had inhaled the vapors or nibbled on her shirt and ingested some. He had them for 24 hours; 5 days have passed since the last one. I feel I am lucky the outcome could have been far worse.

To the member who asked about the Carpet Deodorizer, here is a note from someone who had a BAD experience...

Arm & Hammer Pet Fresh carpet deodorizer:

"My cockatiel died after I used it. Company admitted it's not recommended for use around birds. They said they didn't need to put a warning on the product. I'm just broken hearted, and her mate is just lost without her."

DISCLAIMER:  LIPS is not responsible for any false information given on this page.  Information above was compiled from message boards, emails and from the caring individual bird owners who have come across important knowledge that they felt needed to be shared with others who love their birds.