Hundreds of exotic birds stolen from Pa. home

March 07, 1997


Staff Writer

ORRSTOWN, Pa. - About 225 exotic birds were stolen from a private collection held in a converted mobile home in northeast Franklin County, according to Pennsylvania State Police.

The birds - finches, love birds, cockatiels, parakeets and a pair of diamond doves - were owned by Kathy Fertivey, 42, of 10991 Mountain Road, police said.

"They were my babies," Fertivey said. "I don't know who took them or why, but I know this: They will all die because whoever took them brought them out into the cold weather and they can't stand that."


Fertivey, who raises the birds as a hobby, said her mother discovered they were missing on Sunday.

Fertivey checked the trailer the day before and didn't think anything was wrong.

"I just thought they were all nesting," Fertivey said. "I've got nests all over the place in there, tons of them, and the birds sometime go two or three to a nest."

She estimated the value of the stolen birds at $6,800. She said the thieves might try to sell them in the South, if any are still alive.

She said only about 22 birds were left behind by the intruders.

The birds taken were mostly brooding pairs, she said.

Fertivey said she sells several hundred young birds every year at prices cheaper than most pet shops.

"Some people buy them when they're a day old when they don't have feathers or anything. They want to hand feed them themselves."

Fertivey said she fills self-feeders and waterers for her birds every two days.

"I try to keep out of the trailer when they're breeding," she said. "I don't like to bother them."

Fertivey said she doesn't need a license to keep her birds.

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