Feathers of exotic birds from La Palmyre zoo sent to the Kogi people in Colombia

Founded in France in October 1997, the latter brings together “those who wish to contribute to the restitution of ancestral lands for the benefit of the peoples of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta in northern Colombia, particularly the Kogis and the Wiwas, to support the regeneration of biodiversity and engage in a creative dialogue with them”.

Pink flamingo feathers from the La Palmyre zoo end up on the heads of Kogi Indians in Colombia.

Franz Kaston Florez

The artist took over, in France, their quest for feathers. Deforestation associated with the extinction of populations of macaws and ibises has in fact made it increasingly difficult to renew their headdresses and adornments as well as the use of feathers for their dance and song rituals. Tiphaine Nicoleau therefore toured zoos to try to collect this precious asset. In La Palmyre, this request had a favorable response. “We found this original approach. It is also completely in line with our mission to preserve species and, beyond that, cultures that have a very strong link with animals,” says Florence Perroux, communication and conservation officer at the La Palmyre zoo.

A shipment in good and due form

Instructions were therefore given to keepers to recover the feathers of scarlet ibises, flamingos and parrots during moulting. “In the end, there are no large quantities. I do a first sorting to keep only the usable feathers that are not damaged. Afterwards, Tiphaine is responsible for cleaning them,” says the zoo’s scientific mediator. It is also the artist who is in charge of transporting the cargo intended for the “mamas”, the spiritual leaders of the Kogis, in Colombia.

The next shipment is ready to be shipped to the Kogi people.

The next shipment is ready to be shipped to the Kogi people.

Fanny Blanchard

Leave a Comment