This Blog is For the Birds!

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We’ve added some birds to our “zoo”! Our middle daughter is living at home after recently graduating from college. She has been working for a “Temp” service while she studies for the LSATs and applies to law schools. She is a big pet lover. In the months since she’s been home, she has added three birds to our pet-filled home.

I love all of our furry creatures. I wasn’t quite sure whether I would like the feathered ones as well. We made it clear to her that if she brought birds into our house with the dogs, cat and fish, they would be her responsibility. Even though we all pitch in with the other pets, there’s always lot of work that needs to be done. It can be overwhelming at times.

The first bird she brought home was a cockatiel. She bought him from a woman in Syracuse. The woman was reluctant to part with her beloved birds but was in the midst of cancer treatments and could not keep them. My daughter was given the only cockatiel left. Her other one was bought the day before by someone else.

The cockatiel she bought was three months old. He is a cute looking bird with a crest on his head that looks like a modern day hairstyle and two roundish orange circles on either side of his face that look like blush. He rode on my daughter’s shoulder the whole car ride home. She decided to name him “Bernie” after Senator Bernie Sanders.

I was surprised at how tame Bernie was when I first met him and how he would easily climb on my shoulder. What I found interesting about Bernie is when he gets mad, he throws a little tantrum. The tantrum consists of him making a funny noise and a quick peck. The pecking is more of a warning than an aggressive act. It’s also more funny than scary because it does not hurt at all.

My first impression was that Bernie almost seemed a bit spoiled. His personality seems to be laid back. He is very friendly and loves people. He is attached to my daughter, literally and figuratively. She walks around with him on her all the time now. She even takes a shower with him. I never knew a human and a bird could be so bonded.

Recently, Bernie needed his claws clipped. My daughter knew of a place in Rochester that would do it for free. Coincidentally, that place also had lots of birds. In fact, that’s where my daughter originally planned to get a cockatiel but when she was ready for one, they didn’t have any available. She not only returned with Bernie and his newly clipped claws but she also brought back a handsome green parakeet.

We were a bit surprised that she brought home another bird. We were worried this would be too much. She set the cage up in her room by herself and took care of him privately. Soon after, I came into her room to see this new parakeet. He was in a different cage than Bernie. He just sat on his perch and looked back at me. He didn’t do much more. There was no song or incessant chirp like the one that comes from Bernie. He didn’t seem to want to be handled at all. He was very quiet.

My daughter volunteers at the SPCA which is a place where people can adopt pets that have been given up or abandoned. She came home one night with another parakeet. This one was a gorgeous blue color. Someone found it in the woods and surrendered it to the SPCA and she decided to adopt it. The blue parakeet came with his own cage and a free vet visit.

She placed his cage next to the green parakeet’s cage. They were chirping to each other right away. This newly adopted parakeet brought the green parakeet’s song to life. It was love at first sight for the two of them.

My daughter brought him to the vet for his free visit. She was also concerned because he seemed to sleep a lot. In the exam room at the Veterinarian’s office, they couldn’t catch the new parakeet for 30 minutes after she took him out of his cage. He was flying around the room making it difficult for the vet to examine him carefully.

Soon after the blue parakeet was checked out by the vet, my daughter put the two parakeets in the same cage. They were an instant couple. The handsome blue bird slept next to his new mate wing to wing. Sadly, the beautiful blue parakeet died shortly after he came to our house. It may have been old age or a previous condition unknown to us. I was consoled by the knowledge that he found his true love before his death.

My daughter was distraught after her blue parakeet died so she decided to get a new parakeet at our local Pet Smart. The new parakeet she chose was white with a touch of blue. It was a hard choice because there were so many of them but this one looked happy. He was sitting contentedly on the swing while the others flew around him.

She named the green parakeet Apollo and the new white parakeet Circe. It took some time for them to get used to one another but now Apollo and Circe are inseparable. When I hear them sing, I hear a song of contentment.

All is good at the “zoo” at our house. Bernie the cockatiel and my daughter have bonded. If he’s not in his cage, you will usually find Bernie on her shoulder. The two parakeets sing songs of contentment as the dogs play, the cat sleeps, and the fish swim. The birds have provided a harmonious background to our busy home. Our new feathered friends have won us over.

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