Owner of 245 birds rescued in Damascus by Humane Society facing - KPTV - FOX 12

Owner of 245 birds rescued in Damascus by Humane Society facing felony charges

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Photo of rescued birds. (Image: Oregon Humane Society) Photo of rescued birds. (Image: Oregon Humane Society)
Photo of rescued birds. (Image: Oregon Humane Society) Photo of rescued birds. (Image: Oregon Humane Society)
Photo of rescued birds. (Image: Oregon Humane Society) Photo of rescued birds. (Image: Oregon Humane Society)
DAMASCUS, OR (KPTV) -

The owner of 245 birds rescued by the Oregon Humane Society from a Damascus barn has been indicted by a grand jury on felony charges of animal neglect.

The Humane Society received a tip about the birds living in poor conditions and conducted one of the agency's largest ever animal rescues in July.

Investigators said the birds were living in overcrowded cages stacked three or four high. The cages were filled with waste that was several inches deep and overflowing into cages below in some cases.

The birds included exotic breeds like African grey parrots, macaws, cockatoos and conures.

Humane Society workers said many of them were suffering from severe feather plucking and overgrown nails and beaks.

The owner of the birds, 57-year-old Rick Dwight Richards, identified himself as a long-time breeder.

Each of the three animal neglect felony charges he faces carries a maximum jail term of five years and a fine up to $125,000. Each count covers multiple animals.

The owner was also indicted on a misdemeanor neglect count related to a kinkajou, an exotic mammal that is a member of the raccoon family.

After being rescued in July, the birds were transferred to an emergency facility operated by the Oregon Humane Society.

The birds are not available for adoption at this time, as they are part of an ongoing court case

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