Saturday December 15th will be Tracy Aviary’s sixth annual Christmas Bird Count for Kids (CBC4Kids). Why should you get out in the winter weather with us?

1 - Unplug and get moving!

In the winter, it’s easy to turn to screens for entertainment. The CBC4Kids provides a fun and easy way to be active and enjoy the outdoors.

2 - Spend quality time together.

The “for Kids” part might be a little misleading. This is for the whole family! Though children may be dropped off for the CBC4Kids, we love it when adults join the party. 

Why IS it called “for Kids” then? The CBC4Kids is a companion to National Audubon Society’s Christmas Bird Count, in which participants try to count EVERY BIRD in a 15-mile diameter circle within a 24-hour period. Sounds daunting for kids, right?! That’s why the CBC4Kids count is only 1 ½ hours in a much smaller area.

Is 1 ½ hours still too long for your kiddo? That’s why we developed the CBC for Little Chicks, ideal for ages 2-7, accompanied by an adult. It’s full of games, stories, and crafts that you can join and leave at your leisure.

3- Be a part of history.

The Christmas Bird Count has been happening every year since 1900! Learn how the old holiday tradition of the “Side Hunt” turned into the oldest citizen science project in the world at

 4 - Do an act of service.

The birds we count in the CBC4Kids contribute to the international network of counts happening within a two week period around Christmas. This massive snapshot of where birds are during our winter contributes to scientific research that informs how we conserve our natural world. Your participation makes a difference!

Photo 1 Braving the Cold

5 - Get to know your feathered neighbors.

Discover which birds can tough it out here in the city with us, even as temperatures drop.

6 - Gain new skills.

Experienced Aviary birders will give you a crash course in binoculars and bird identification before we get counting.

7 - Score a DEAL!

This is one of our most affordable programs at just $3/person, including admission!

Photo 3 Birding

Ready to sign up? Learn more and register at 

Published in Bird Tweets
October 03, 2018

An Interview With Andy

An exclusive interview with Tracy Aviary's celebrity, Andy N. Condor.

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What’s your favorite color?

Blue! Why, you ask? Because Tracy Aviary's staff uniform is blue... so that's the color all my favorite people wear. "Blue," I hear, is also the term for a very rare steak - which is just how I like it! hehe There's always room for a good steak pun - it's a rare medium if well-done.

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What do you like to eat?

I only eat meat (no veggies or salad for me - trying to be a vegetarian would be a big missed-steak hehehe). I eat a lot of different types of meat, but my favorites are beef heart and beef liver! Yum!

How long have you lived at Tracy Aviary?

I have been here longer than any other living creature! I turn 60 years old next year, (I hope you are going to come and help me celebrate that monumental birthday - stay tuned for details), and since I came to Tracy Aviary when I was just one year old, I've been here almost 59 years.

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What’s something most people don’t know about you?

 Well, if you follow my Facebook page, (, there is probably not much you don't know about me - I share lots of intimate secrets on there, I'm pretty much an open book! If you don't follow me on Facebook, (first of all, why not?), you might not know that my mission in life is to change the culture when it comes to the vulture! I want to help people understand the truth about us and all the virtues of vultures! We are often seen as scary, villainous, gross, or goofy... but really we are smart, social, extremely clean, we don't hurt any other living creatures, and through our carrion clean-up, we are invaluable to the health of any ecosystem we live in. In my opinion, to know a vulture is to love a vulture.

Favorite Bird Joke 

Two vultures are eating a dead clown... one of them turns to the other and says, "Does this taste funny to you?" haha

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What is your go to karaoke song? 

Carrion Wayward Son by Kansas hehehe Not really, but if you intentionally misspell the title it creates a vulture reference, and I love a good vulture pun! How about Back in Black (and white) by ACDC - classic, just like me.

If you were a jazz musician, what instrument would you play?

Piano, of course - and if you saw me with my wings stretched out, you'd understand why! I wanted to make another meat pun here, but I was afraid I'd butcher it!


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What is your favorite sport? 

I'd have to say football... because I hear it is played with a pigskin and that sounds deeeeelicious to me!


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What is your dream vacation spot? 

I was going to choose Turkey - because that just sounds like a tasty place to visit... but then I heard there is a city called Liverpool, so I'm going with that! I just hope it lives up to it's name, can you imagine... a whole POOL of it!?


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Can't get enough of Andy? See his beautiful face all year long with our new Andy Calendar. 

Available in our giftshop or by emailing .




Published in Bird Tweets
September 26, 2018

A Kea Goodbye

This week we bid farewell to two of our kea, Takaro and Roy. They are off on a new adventure at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. The Cleveland zookeepers have been anxiously awaiting their landing and preparing their new exhibit for their arrival.  

Our two curious kea will be packed in a double enclosure on their trip and their crates will be filled with interactive toys to keep them busy and safe as they fly to Cleveland.

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Takaro and Roy are brothers that have been at Tracy Aviary since 2012. They came to the Aviary when they were about a year and a half old. Some entertaining insights on the duo: Takaro loves blueberries and Roy loves peanuts. Roy is the more reserved of the two, and Takaro has a more outgoing personality.

The brothers have been together their whole life and get along really well. We will miss our feathered friends, but we’re excited for Cleveland to help us to tell the story of our amazing kea friends.

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The goal of our kea exhibit is to provide an environment for Kea to match up with approved pairs as part of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan. Within the next few months, you’ll be able to see Scarlet’s two new potential suitors, Arthur and Steve Austin. The AZA acts as an animal matchmaker. They carefully analyze each bird and pair them up with other birds that would be an ideal match for healthy, genetically diverse offspring.  

Tracy Aviary is home to a unique, one-of-a-kind match-making facility designed to give our kea the ability to choose a mate. In the wild, breeding typically occurs when kea have multiple options for suitors. Unlike the majority of zoos in the country, our exhibit allows us to give our female kea, Scarlet, the chance to meet male kea to choose from.

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For the safety of the birds, the introduction period is a slow process. First, there is a quarantine period. Then our keepers base the introduction on how the birds react with each other. The keepers pay careful attention to the way that all birds react in order to make sure the transition is a smooth one.

We find that our kea are often more active as the temperature drops, so it’s the perfect time to plan your visit to Tracy Aviary. Keep an eye out for Scarlet’s new suitors coming from the Cincinnati Zoo in November, and don’t forget that we’re open 363 days a year!    

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Published in Bird Tweets