Editor’s note: The following is a press release from author Sarah Milward. Bloom has republished it here with edits for style and clarity.
Green-winged macaw Charlie Bird, who turned 39 on April 3, is known for riding on the back of a bicycle and dancing to live music at local farmers’ markets. Now, a children’s picture book will chronicle his adventures in Bloomington and raise money for his medical expenses.
In 2018, Charlie contracted avian virus that affects his central nervous system, nearly resulting in his death. With treatment from an avian veterinary specialist, including antibiotic and antiviral injections (some directly to his brain), he survived is expected to live a normal lifespan—80 years or more! However, Charlie requires daily medication and regular visits to the specialist to keep him healthy. He’ll need medical care for his condition for the rest of his life, with total costs estimated at over $25,000.
To support Charlie’s medical needs, his fans are creating Charlie Bird Loves Bloomington, a children’s book that follows Charlie as he enjoys his favorite activities in Bloomington, from bike riding to paddle-boarding, visiting the farmer’s market, and even sledding.
The book will be crowd-funded on Kickstarter, launching in early April. Fans can back the project and be among the first to receive a copy of Charlie’s book. Physical copies of the book are $15, digital downloads are $5, and a limited number of top-tier backers will receive a real Charlie Bird feather. Books are expected to ship out to Kickstarter backers in July and will be available for sale online and at select locations in Bloomington thereafter.
For more information, visit charliebirdbtown.com or follow Charlie Bird of Bloomington on Facebook.