Bring Angus Home

  • by: The Parrot Rescue Centre
  • recipient: President RSPCA, Dr. Hugh Wirth & RSPCA VIC Chief Executive Officer, Maria Mercurio.
On several occasions, Mr. Justin Lawther took "his' clipped male Eclectus parrot 'Angus' for a wild ride on the windshield of his car at speeds of up to 100 km/h on a highway in Melbourne.  Angus was hanging on to nothing but the windshield wipers.  Mr. Lawther video recorded the event and published it in the comedy category of YouTube along with several other videos of similar "rides" filmed in different backstreets around Melbourne.
During one 100 km/h ride, Mr. Lawther at times turned on the windshield wipers - at other times made rapid stops.  These seemed to be attempts to knock the bird off the car, but Mr. Lawther states he wanted the bird "to feel the wind in his feathers".  On one news story, after being told that people consider his actions cruel, his quote was "It doesn't matter to me".
After the RSPCA became involved, Mr. Lawther absconded with the bird and neither have since been found.  It has come to light that Angus is very likely a bird that was separated from its real owner in December 2010.
An example of the YouTube video footage available can be found at:
We, the undersigned, would like to voice our support of the RSPCA seizing this bird from Justin Lawther - forcing Mr. Lawther to relinquish any rights of intent of ownership - and to begin legal proceedings against Mr. Lawther for animal abuse.
From the video footage, it is evident that Angus is in poor condition compared to a healthy Eclectus, therefore he is not receiving the specialised care from Justin Lawther that is required.  (An Eclectus in good condition should look like the photo attached.)  We feel that due to Justin Lawther's current actions and the condition of the bird, it is in the best interest of Angus to be removed from his ownership.
We strongly support transferring Angus' care temporarily to a bird rescue, where specialised avian veterinary care and husbandry is provided and until the question of ownership is resolved.  The Parrot Rescue Centre ( has agreed to coordinate the care of Angus during that period, and has offered to provide suitable foster care for Angus in a private home setting with one of their foster care-givers in Victoria.  We believe a foster care environment would be in the best interest of the bird, as they are uniquely suited to caring for a bird who has been living under such stressful and abusive conditions.  We also urge you to investigate the likely ownership of Angus by Carrie Chatters - who has documentation supporting the same.
We understand that currently Mr. Lawther has not been able to be located, and we strongly urge you to elicit any assistance from the local authorities in order to find him and bring him to justice in this matter before Angus is subjected to even more abuse.  Mr. Lawther has made it clear through media contacts that he has no remorse for the way that he treats Angus and so is not likely to change his methods of care.  As he clearly states on subsequent news video, he believes there is nothing wrong with what he is doing.
We thank you for your efforts and concern in this matter.
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