About the Aviary

The aviary is a large enclosure used as a habitat for birds. These large habitats give birds the necessary room to fly around as they please. The aviary enclosure at Crowley Museum and Nature Center provides birds with a safe place to live until their eventual release back into the wilderness. Some birds will stay here longer than others, but almost all will be released. This aviary is specifically equipped with an automated food and water system and has been redesigned to provide additional enrichment for birds.

Animals in the Aviary


Northern Cardinal

Northern Cardinals can be identified by their medium-sized build, bright red color, a short cone-shaped bill, and a black mask on their faces. Northern Cardinals are also categorized as songbirds; both male and female sing all year round. The males sing in a loud, clear whistle to either defend their territories or chase other males off. The females have more elaborate singing to inform the males to bring food.
With a diet consisting mostly of seed, they have short cone shaped beaks designed to crack open seeds. Within the seeds there is a high amount of carotenoids which is responsible for giving cardinals their red color. Male cardinals have bright scarlet feathers while females feature more brown and dull feathers. Once a year during the summer, cardinals will molt, or shed, their feathers, and for a period of time look bald with their gray skin visible. 


Pigeons live everywhere people are found! Many pigeons are descendants of rock doves and have been domesticated to be pets and food. Pigeons live in numerous urban and developed areas. To adapt to their concrete jungle habitat, pigeons’ nest in protective areas, such as lofts and attics. When flying far, pigeons can find their way back to their nest from hundreds of miles away. 
Pigeons are highly sociable with each other and frequently are seen in flocks of 20-30. They also have excellent hearing and are able to hear lower frequencies than humans can. Pigeons have the ability fly at high speeds, with the fastest speed ever recorded at 92 mph.

Bubbles the Pigeon

This famous resident (pictured above) of Crowley’s aviary was injured after falling off a tall structure, causing him to receive neurological damage and a ruptured air sac. He spends his days squawking, chirping, and flapping his wings. His favorite thing to do is eat. Bubbles loves to squawk and flap his wings, which opens him up to being an easy target for predators.  Bubbles cannot be released due to his noisy habits and will therefore be a permanent resident of Crowley's aviary.



Turkeys are native to North America and are found in every state (except for Alaska)! According to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, " In the early 1900s, wild turkeys were on the brink of extinction, with only about 200,000 left. Through conservation efforts over the past century, with funds derived from the Pittman-Robertson Act, and thanks to sportsmen and women, there are approximately 6.5 million wild birds in the United States today, according to the National Wild Turkey Federation."

Turkeys eat ground insects and seeds and usually reside it the woodlands. Turkeys can also fly, just not for long distances (about 0.25 mile).  Turkeys can be identified by their snood (a long red piece of flesh growing over their bills) and their wattles (red fleshy pieces hanging form their necks).

Southern Cassowary

The Southern Cassowary are large flightless birds that originate from New Guinea and Australia. They can be identified by their blue faces and long red necks. These birds can reach heights of up to six feet and are the third tallest bird in the world. On top of that, they are the second heaviest bird, right behind ostriches. Despite their size, a southern cassowary can run up to 50 kmph. Cassowaries are frugivores, which means that their diet consists of many types of tropical forest fruits; over 238 species of plants have been recorded in the cassowaries’ diets.