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In Memoriam

With the launch of our re-designed website in 2013 we have added this new page to commemorate and pay tribute to notable aviculturists, ornithologists and naturalists, etc., whose willingness to share with others has contributed towards our growing knowledge of aviculture in the past, in the present and for generations to come.


CLAYTON:  Leslie John
A Salute to Leslie John Clayton (1933 to 1996). Many members will recall the bird man of Taronga Zoo, Les Clayton, who died on the 20th January 1996 at the comparatively early age of 63. Les had several heart operations over the last decade and had reached the stage where nothing more could be done.


Experienced Aviculturist (1923-2011).   On the 20th January 2011 we lost one of the gentlemen of aviculture.
Des was a tireless worker for bird clubs. He was a member of the Avicultural Society of NSW (Life Member), the Finch Society of Australia and the Softbill and Native Pigeon Society of Australia. Des held many positions in bird clubs over the years, some of the positions included: Editor of The Avicultural Review (a publication of the Avicultural Society of NSW), Honorary Treasurer for the Avicultural Society of NSW and Secretary of the Finch Society of NSW.


ERDOS:  Laszlo
Naturalist, film-maker (1914-1999).   "Birds were his lifetime preoccupation ... indeed; he reckoned they helped save his life during World War II. He travelled thousands of kilometres filming, and recording calls of Australian birds in their habitat, but they are largely unknown: the films of Laszlo Erdos, who has died at the age of 85, have never been shown on Australian TV. Erdos was a pioneer in the filming and recording of Australia's delicate and elusive songbirds. He documented hundreds of species, many never previously filmed."


FISH:  Allen
Experienced Aviculturist (1940-2012).  It was with sincere sadness the day we reported the passing of Allen Fish on Thursday 8th March 2012 after a long battle with cancer.  Allen served for four years as the Society's President and did a wonderful job for us.  His "hands on" approach and enthusiastic attitude kept our Society at a very successful level and members were very appreciative of his work.


GOULD:  John ('The Goulds')
Known as the 'Bird Man', John Gould was a self-taught ornithologist as well as a businessman and artist. Although he spent less than two years in Australia, his monumental seven-volume publication 'The Birds of Australia' remains the definitive work on the subject. The magnificent colour plates, some 681 of them, were executed by his wife, Elizabeth, a talented artist who shared his natural history interests.


HEALY:  Brian
Veterinarian and expert aviculturist  (1934-2004).  Bird fanciers have lost a most knowledgeable veterinarian, expert aviculturist and tireless worker for aviculture. Brian was born in Cowra NSW (8th February 1934) and later when starting high school moved to the Sydney region to attend boarding school. At the completion of high school Brian studied Veterinarian Science at Sydney University.

Central Coast Aviculturist.  Bill's passing at the age 71 in 1995 was a great loss to aviculture. Bill's love of parrots, particularly the Antbed Parrots: Paradise, Golden-shouldered and Hooded, was well known. He regularly produced between 60 and 70 Hooded Parrots per year and heaven knows how many Golden-shouldeed Parrots wre produced.


KINGSTON:  Russell
OAM (1945-2017).  By Graeme Phipps on behalf of the members of The Avicultural Society of New South Wales. To everyone's great shock we recently lost a great champion for birds in general and finches in particular, in the untimely and sudden death of Russell Kingston. Russell was a favoured son of aviculture and an absolutely outstandingly gifted bird breeder.


LANE:  George Selwyn ("Colonel Bill Lane")
Officer, Ornithologist (1922 - 2000).   Lane loved to share his experiences; he was on the speakers' circuit for most of the bird clubs of NSW and launched many people, young and old, into careers in ornithology. In 1982 the West Australian government wanted to name an island off Esperance after him for his pioneer work there. Typically, he asked for it to be named for Lorraine (who survives him, as do their two children). Lane does have his own memorials - the hundreds of letters received by the family from people who first gained their love of birds from him. His extensive library, slides and notes will be preserved in state and national libraries.


"Since at least the 1970s Joelle was an avid aviculturist who was involved in many bird societies holding committee positions such as Membership Secretary and Co-editor (with Dr Michael Cannon) for the Avicultural Society of New South Wales, President of the Shoalhaven Aviculture Society for three terms (6 years), and Patron of the same club for too many years to count."

On 25th February, aviculture lost one of its very well known members. Joe was a person who had a tremendous amount of time and deep love for animals. His collection of animals in Wollongong had not only one of the premier parrot collections in Australia but also a variety of others that included Brush Turkeys, Wallabies and Fallow Deer. All were protected by one of the most savage cattledogs I have ever met - who travelled under the simple name of "Red".


Stan Sindel OAM (1934 - 2018). Stan was awarded Life Membership of the Avicultural Society of New South Wales Inc. for his dedication to the Society and its members and relentless contributions and willingness to share his knowledge and personal experiences in both the field and in the aviary."

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