Noisy pet bird ruffles feathers at B.C. condo building

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      Cockatiels are small cockatoos that make a lot of sounds.

      These popular pet birds chirp, warble, squawk, whistle, and even mimic speech.

      But for condo dweller Tamie Dale, the sounds of her neighbour’s cockatiel are too loud.

      Dale filed a complaint before the B.C. Civil Resolution Tribunal, and she wants the strata to do a proper investigation of the noises.

      The woman also wants the strata to fine her neighbours, and remove the bird.

      In addition, Dale sought compensation of $4,000 for the nuisance caused by the cockatiel.

      Except for ordering an investigation, the tribunal did not grant Dale’s other requests.

      Tribunal member Kathleen Mell has ordered the strata to arrange within 60 days a “noise testing” to be done by a qualified professional.

      The test will be done in Dale’s home without providing advance notice to her neighbours who own the cockatiel.

      “I accept that the bird is making noise,” Mell wrote in her reasons for decision.

      However, there is not enough evidence available to show that the bird is creating excessive noise, which would be in violation of the strata’s bylaws.

      The bylaws of the strata also provide that owners can keep up to “two quiet, caged birds”.

      Dale’s neighbours are a mother and her adult daughter. The daughter owns the bird.

      Mell related that Dale claimed that the cockatiel “screams every day and often continuously for hours and that she can hear it from every room of her strata lot”.

      Dale told the tribunal that she talked to the mother, and that the latter “admitted that the bird made noise that bothered her as well and that she sometimes left the building to get away from it”.

      “The mother denies that she ever said this,” Mell wrote.

      Mell recounted that the bird’s owner said in a written statement that her cockatiel “occasionally chirps during the day but that it is not noisy”.

      “She says that she covers it during the evening hours and then it is completely silent,” Mell related. “She also says that initially she covered the bird from 10 p.m. to 9 a.m., but more recently she covers it from 9 p.m. to 9 a.m.”

      The mother and daughter also denied Dale’s claim that they leave their TV and fan on to cover the bird’s noise.

      Dale's boyfriend claimed that the bird's noises are worse when there is no one at the neighbours' home.

      Mell ordered that after the test is done, the strata has to provide Dale with a copy of the results and determine whether her neighbours have violated the condo’s bylaws.

      According to Mell, it's premature for her to order any bylaw enforcement remedies requested by Dale, such as fines or removal of the bird.