Everybody Panic!

I am home more these days, of course, as I have ceased to work in the real world. I am cleaning, cooking, and most important of all, spending more time with my beloved birds. I allow at least 2 hours for each bird, although Maynard does get a bit more. So far there have been no problems in letting the cockatiels out with Jake the lovebird, the sun conures, and my severely splayed orange front conure. But without fail, something will spook the tiels, and EVERYBODY panics. Birds fly all over. Now, I don’t currently know all my cockatiels by name. They come, they go, we make more, it’s too much. I do know I need to have 16 cockatiels in the cages when out time is up, and one little rosie Bourke.

A day or two ago, I could only count 15 tiels. I searched high. I searched low. I figured someone had flown into the office, and I couldn’t see him or her behind the paper models and boxes and stuff. I called, and heard an answer. I called again. The answer came from behind me. One of the African grays can do a spot-on impression of a cockatiel. At last, I had to go do things, and figured the bird would come out again when hungry or thirsty.

I admit. I completely forgot about the missing cockatiel after that. That evening, my husband said he heard a mouse chewing on something behind his desk. Seriously, something was going to town on whatever was back there. He got up and walked over to look for the mouse. Or possibly rat. “Honey, whatever is back here is hissing at me.” The light bulb received current. “That’s probably our missing cockatiel!” And I told him the whole story. He remained a bit shook up for the rest of the night.

My toeless African Gray, Bo Dangles, loves to have out time. She doesn’t fly, but she will slide down a towel on a wooden tray, and sit on the comfy carpet. She also likes to go under her cage, and explore and nap. But most of all, she loves to shoot out as fast as her little stumps will carry her and attack me as I walk by. I have to wear shoes around her, and I have to remember she’s out, or she seriously startles me. She’s trying to hit me up on my leg, since the shoes don’t yield whatever reaction she is going for.

For several complicated financial issues, our son has moved back into his old room. Maynard does not believe we don’t see this potential threat in his home. He panics whenever Al comes home, walks by, or uses the kitchen. Even when Al leaves, Maynard continues to sound the alarm. I have taken him through the house, shown him there’s no one there, and he goes back to his cage. The calm lasts about 10 minutes. Then the Amazon brain remembers a threat, and the alarm must be sounded. Poor Maynard is spending a lot of time covered right now. Luckily, this situation is only for a month.

I almost think Al has surpassed Mike as Maynard’s biggest enemy. Good thing I love them all. Thanks for reading, I’ll be back on Sunday.


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