The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill
Documentary by Judy Irving
Before I watched this documentary I thought it might be an interesting piece on wild parrots in an urban setting. It’s that but much more. Mark Bittner is a homeless man who began feeding the wild parrot flock around Telegraph Hill in San Francisco. Over time he was able to develop a relationship with the birds and cared for those who were injured or sick. He brought them into the small apartment where he was squatting until they were well, giving them names. Through the filmmaker’s lens, we’re able to experience their separate personalities. There’s Mingus, a cherry head, who loves to dance to the blues. And Connor with his quiet regal manner, a blue-crowned parrot in a flock of cherry heads, too many others to name here. I don’t want to give away too much.
At the heart of the story is how Mark found inner peace and his place in the world through service to the parrots. There may be a message for many of us in this poignant and inspiring film.
View short clips on You Tube. Available via Netflix, Amazon and elsewhere.