My African Gray parrot, Bo Dangles, is quite a character. She talks, she hangs by her beak, she takes baths, and she attacks my feet. I imagine because she doesn’t have toes, she finds them an abomination. She is most likely to eat new foods and loves her veggies. Continue reading “The Sharp End of the Parrot”
Parrots and most birds are happiest when their lives as pets have elements of their lives in the wild. Lots of wood to chew on, lots of fresh greens and grains, and lots of contact with their flock. Toys can also keep parrots busy and happy, but there is one better way to keep a bird occupied and not bored. Continue reading “A Foraging Party”
If you open your home to birds, especially parrots, who have some condition that makes them less desirable as a pet, you come to understand the drive of the life force, the ability to survive that makes Special Needs creatures so endearing. These birds become easy to write about because of the positive energy they embody. Continue reading “Special Needs Birds and Their Care”
I think of my inside parrots as my kids in a lot of ways. I have to feed them, or at least provide food. I have to clean them, play with them, teach them, and make sure they are comfortable through the night. Maybe I am a bit too intrusive into their lives, like a helicopter parent. They certainly have their way to show me they are independent souls. Continue reading “Independent Kids”
I expect that title is a bit misleading. You see, I had the amazing pleasure of hand feeding and weaning an African Grey chick. I called him Digger due to the habit he had of scratching at the bottom of the cage. He did this mostly when he wanted to get out and see me. Continue reading “Delivering a Baby, Part One”
What’s it like to have 70 some birds living with you? Well mostly it dictates every day’s schedule. First on the list is to check waters. We use mostly tube-shaped waterers that can hold a couple days worth of water. But some birds like open bowls of water. Every morning, these are checked and any that are low or cloudy are pulled, cleaned, refilled, and replaced. Lovebirds like to stuff things into the waterers. So they are usually being changed daily. Then food is checked, fresh food handed around, and notes made on who is eating what and what we are getting low on. But the best part of having such a huge flock, if one of the birds is being cranky, there’s always someone else to cuddle with and play with. And when I pull up to the house, even if I have only been gone an hour, the chorus of welcomes is occasionally enough to bring tears to my eyes. I love my birds.
For the new year, my thoughts are about securing the future for my birds. And that’s kind of a difficult thing to think about. The finches, budgies, cockatiels, canaries, and lovebirds will probably not outlive me or my husband. And we won’t be replacing them when we lose them. The conures are a pot shot. But luckily it probably won’t be that difficult to find qualified people to take care of them. The difficult children to rehome are Maynard and the Congo African Grays with special needs. Maynard because he is so attached to me, and has been passed around so much already. He’s 26 years old, and might live another 30 years. Blind Io will also need a kind soul to take him in, and I would like him to be kept with Bo Dangles so he has some sense of continuity and family. Bo has no feet, but she is a fun and entertaining bird. She is getting to the point where she allows me to touch her more and more. I just don’t know who would fall in love with her like I have, and be willing to change her dirty towels on her shelf every day. The towels need to be taken outside and hosed off, then hung to dry. When I have gone through the week’s worth of towels, I wash them, and start over. I have to go to thrift stores to find suitable towels for her. She likes to chew on them, sometimes.
We’ve been putting up with our mouse invasion for so long now, it’s hard to think we might have won the battle if not the war. We got three high-pitch sonic generators yesterday, and today the noise from the rodents is gone. The house has lost the mouse smell in the back rooms and corners. And the two electronic zap traps we set out with yummy peanut butter haven’t caught a single one. (Last minute update: heard a few mice last night, and caught one in the zap trap. SO close) I might put those out in the aviary next. It had been so bad that a mouse walked out on the bottom of Maynard’s t-perch which is next to my desk, and didn’t even worry about the fact I was sitting right there! I won’t even go into the horrid places I have found dead mice. With all the cleaning I have been doing and moving stuff around, the mice have been looking for other places to live. But today I think we may have actually gotten them to look outside of the house. In spite of the easy to get to food supply in the various cages, we have made it difficult for them to put up with us any longer.
Hope you holidays have been magical and your flock is doing well. I’ll be back on Thursday.