Desperate situation

Coombs’ World Parrot Refuge reeling from loss of gaming grants.

The Coombs sanctuary remains open and refuge co-founder Wendy Huntbatch hopes a tourist boom later this month will allow her to hire back employees. For now, the sanctuary is struggling to care for more than 800 birds, more than 100 extra compared to the same time last year, as more continue to arrive.

Huntbatch has been using her own credit card for the last five months to help care for the parrots, many of whom require expensive veterinary care. A thrift shop on the Coombs property opened last month to help alleviate some of the pressure but it is a desperate situation, said Huntbatch.

“We’ll keep on struggling,” said Huntbatch. “I spend every penny I’ve got supporting them.”

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