First published in the American Singers Club newsletter, July 2001.
"American Singer" as a term is fast on it's way to becoming generic. Like Jell-O and Kleenex. Far to often I have been told that because the bird was born in America and that it sings it is still assumed as an A.S.; or that the person can call his/her birds A.S. if they want to.
This is the time of year I sort through my new chicks to sex them. I also start to get inquiries on the phone and email. Most often I will be able to set up a future date to sell the person one or more birds. I will also answer questions and explain about American Singers throughout the whole sales process. Unfortunately, more often than not, these people have already been sold bogus American Singer birds.
Many pet stores and seemingly reputable bird breeders will say anything to make a sale. Most people I talk to are glad to know what they really bought. It is up to them to decide if they want to start over with registered stock or not. but, by educating them, they get to make that choice. And, they won't misrepresent the chicks they sell next year.
We must, as "American Singer" breeders, not only educate the public, but also correct those that misrepresent their birds to the public in the most friendly way possible. We must also admonish those in our club that either ignore, or hold themselves above the rules of our club.
Educate the public. Explain why we club band, and make our pedigree papers. For these people and the birds they may breed are our future. Their birds and the people they educate, will fill our shows. We know how to buy birds, and who to buy them from. Educate the public and you increase your sales, not the pet stores. As more experienced people have helped you out, help that prospective person that calls or emails you (even if you currently have no birds to sell and you have no one to refer them to).
Still, take a few minutes and see if you can't send them in the right direction, armed with knowledge.
If we don't protect our birds' name, who will?
Copyright © 2001 Cathie Rehberg. All rights reserved.
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