Birds of the Month April, 2005
By Eleanor McCaffrey
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Cindy said, "I received Byrd in the summer of 2004. The last thing I wanted
pet was a bird! In fact I had never even thought of owning one. I came to
be the happy owner of Byrd by accident. Some friends of ours were
over and were talking about this bird that they had in their basement! I
was shocked and said that this was no way to treat any pet and if they
didn't want it I would take it. A week later I had "Bart" who was very nasty. Bart and I spent hours
getting to know one another. Soon we became to
love each other. One surprise led to another AND then came the eggs!!!!
Yikes my bird was not a Bart! With all the things Bart had been through I couldn't
fathom completely changing her name, For lack of imagination, I started calling
her "Byrd". Byrd is a very loving girl and often demands a lot of attention. She
son and will go to him every chance she gets. Byrd is not very fond of
baths of any kind, but is starting to check out showers by sitting on my
hand and slowly working her way up my arm. She is doing well and makes me
laugh. She loves
to have breakfast at the table in the morning. Byrd is a fussy eater and if she could,
she would live on millet seed alone. I hope in time she will like all those great foods I read about. I
also hope that one day she will surprise me and talk."
Kari's bird Gabriel is an amazing little survivor. Kari said, "One Sunday
evening I decided to
go to a 24 hour department store. I heard a bird, glanced up and saw
a cockatiel. I talked to him and he started following me wherever I went.
An employee told me that he escaped when somebody took him out of his cage
to buy him. I stopped by the store on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and
Thursday., The cockatiel was always there flying and he would always follow me
around. I got close to this bird several times, but something would
always happen and he would fly off. One time he almost took
a piece of granola bar from me. Each
day I left the
store with a heavy heart. The employees were complaining, kids were chasing him and throwing things
at him and everyone was trying to catch him or kill him. A store employee
told me that the management was going to shoot him due to state board of
health rules regarding food.
On Thursday night I stopped by the store again. I found out that he had flown into the window. A manager threw a box at
him and hit him with it and he had gotten stuck in the fly trap sticky tape.
He was very tired, terrified and flying erratically .
I sat down at a table in the snack area and I just prayed, "Lord,
if you want me to care about this bird and rescue him, you are going to have to help me." I walked to the front of the store and saw
Gabriel trying to get a pack of crackers.
I reached out and grabbed him. A manager came to put him back
in the cage and I said "No way! this bird is coming home with me and I'm
not paying a dime for him!" I bought a cage, food, dishes etc. and a blanket to wrap
around him because it was so cold outside.
Those first few days were rough. Gabriel slept for days.
He also drank a lot of water. His right foot and leg was black and
I was worried that he would lose it. However, he has recovered completely!
What a blessing it is to hear Gabriel whistling
and chirping every morning when I get up! Due to his rough start, he has been very reluctant to get too friendly.
He does eat millet from our fingers and has just started giving our fingers kisses.
Gabriel loves mirrors and bells. He has learned a
couple different whistles but his favorite is the wolf whistle. My favorite thing about Gabriel is that he makes sunshine.
Gabriel whistles and chirps everyday. It makes me feel like it is spring and the sun is shining!"
Skittles is a Crimson Rosella. Rosellas are native birds of Australia. Skits
belongs to Kelly's husband Chris. Chris wanted a bird of his own to bond with
because Kelly already has 2 wonderful cockatiels that consider her mommy. Chris
was hatched July 16th 2004 and came home the following October. She loves
to sing! She sings when she wakes up in the morning. That's how we know
she's ready to start her day. Skittles isn't as snuggly as a cockatiel, but
she does cute things in other ways. She loves to hang upside down on her toy
and squawk loudly! She loves to take a bath, which she does in her water dish
about every other day. She splashes water everywhere! Skittles likes me more
that Kelly. She loves it when her dad rubs her belly and talks to her. If Kelly takes her out of the cage when her daddy is at work,
Skittles will attacks her. Skittles
is a wonderful and beautiful addition to our flock."
This is Odie and she belongs to Charlene. Charlene said, "Odie is a girl
but I'm not sure how old she is. She found us in a pet shop when we were looking
for another companion. Odie was in an
open cage with 4 other cockatiels. I went over to her, started
talking to to her and made kissey-kissey noises. Odie walked over to me and
cocked her head to one side to listen more carefully. I asked Odie if she wanted to go
home with us and she chirped happily. Bringing Odie home was a great decision.
She's so happy to be away from that
noisy pet store. I give her fresh veggies and water every morning. At
night she gets seeds with more fresh water. I think Odie loves her new home.
I bought her a lot of toys and she lives in a nice big cage. Her favorite toy has a bell on the end of it.
She also likes to sit on top of my head. I just love her! She gives me kisses
and I scratch her on the back of her head. She's the most wonderful bird
in the world!"
Gizmo, Cheetah and Sierra are owned by Kim and Victor. They said, "We adopted
Cheetah, the gray bird on top of the cage, in August 2003. As he got
older he learned to say his name and how to give us kisses. Cheetah is the
most talkative bird of the 3. We loved Cheetah so much that we knew we had to get him a companion.
So we adopted a cinnamon cockatiel, Gizmo. She was only about 3 weeks old when we
got her. It was great because we got to handfeed her. Our attachment to her
was special because we were like her parents. Cheetah was really good to her
teaching her how to clean herself and how to eat different foods. They get along
together very well. Gizmo isn't as vocal as Cheetah but she is very affectionate.
Finally we have our lutino cockatiel, Sierra. We also adopted him when he was about
3 weeks old. The chemistry between all three birds was almost instant when we
brought him home. Once again, we hand fed Sierra and Cheetah took control
teaching him where the food, water, and toys were. Sierra is still
young but he is starting to become more vocal like Cheetah. We can't
wait till he starts talking."
This is Birdy. Her owner did not tell us her name. She did say these
loving words about her cherished little angel that recently passed away.
"Birdy was such a character. I had her for over twelve years. After laying an egg last month she developed a prolapsed
cloaca and she had to be
put to sleep. Birdy was such a happy little girl. She loved to ride on my shoulder.
Like most cockatiels she loved getting her head scratched and she would
also give gentle kisses on my cheek. When I would ask Birdy "Lets
see your pretty wings" she would bow her head down and stretch out
her wings for all to see. Birdy loved to join me and my at
meal times. Her favorite foods were cereal, potatoes, rice and lettuce.
Birdy was always the first to welcome me back home after work. As soon as she
heard my footsteps by the door she would chirp loudly. I miss
Birdy so much but I am comforted in the memories of the last
twelve years. She was my little girl."
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