West Marin Bird Breeder Loves his Work
By Mark Prado, Marin Independent Journal
Long has been breeding birds for the past 20-plus years along Papermill Creek. His business, Creekside Birds, is his passion. Don’t bother looking for it; there is no sign.
“This is what I do. Some people play golf, some people tennis, I play birds. I don’t know what I would do without them,” said Long, a Navy veteran who lost his brother during the attack on Pearl Harbor. “I meet so many wonderful people. I get emails every day about people who want to talk about birds. I get groups of preschool kids who want to see the place. I’m not a zoo here, I don’t have time for it. But if I see a couple out there with some kids, they can take a look.”
Long moved to West Marin in 1970 after working in the plumbing business in Los Angeles. He initially raised goats and donkeys on his modest spread. It proved lucrative for awhile, but eventually that market cooled.
He then began to raise pheasants and that grew to ducks, swans, turkeys, doves, geese, peacocks and ostriches, among other feathered animals. Cockatoos and macaws are his favorites. Today he has about 150 birds and 30 different species.