I have studied many birds in their natural environment, flying, mating, eating, preening, hunting, building nests and many more observations that add to my knowledge and understanding. The love for birds comes from my time with my Dad who had an avery with finches and budgies.
Growing up I can remember having a love for drawing birds or animals copying them from books, but remember my parents saying my drawings were really good. Was this just a start of my love for animals and birds.
We have rescued a small bird in the garden and watched it slowly pass away . That in my eyes is a love for creatures that are in need of help, even if it ends with failure and disappointment its better to try and help than do nothing.
Caring for any creature is not something we all have but so that’s why it is so important to spend time with the children of today to teach and introduce them to the outdoors, the garden is a great place to start.
A simple feeder out out in winter to help the little birds to keep the fat reserves up.
This is my opinion on the African Grey Parrot. Like a child of 5 our Bella loves to learn new sentences every week. I usually start on a Sunday and have her own book with her words in. When I started I would say a 1-3 sentences or nursery them and repeat through the week. Sometimes 4 times in the morning dinnertime and evening.
Bella looks from the side when she is interested and her head fea there raise slightly, this is a sign that she is listening to my voice. The eye of the African Grey is a sign of what she is thinking of her mood. A large pupil can mean a few things. She is happy and content, it also means she is listening to me. It goes large at night when the light is dimm.
A small pupil is a sign she could be upset or angry but also this is combined with her body and feather shape. Bella will be 3 next April but already she amazes me and my wife at how observant she is, never taking her eyes of you. It’s like a constant ambition to learn something new every minute of the day.
I have a Google Drive page of all her words and different sayings and the last count was 289 sentences. Typically she will take around 3 to 4 says to say the first part of a new sentence so I help her by finishing it off.
Last week I started to say Merry Christmas Dad, Merry Christmas Mum. She said both perfect yesterday. I find it truly amazing that her little brain can say the words so clear with Feeling and meaning, not just in a bird tone but in my ascent.
When you say what do you want for Breakfast, dinner or tea she tells you what she wants. From pasta, omelette to rice, then go through 10 different vegetables she likes. When you laugh with someone on the phone she laughs with you.
I have seen and heard Grey parrots talk, but I know Bella is unique she talks for hours morning upto dinnertime and all afternoon. Many just have spells but what I have learned is when we have certain visitors she seems to get involved when we start talking. If we laugh she laughs its like she wants to be noticed.
Her molting is strange as it should happen once a year and loose most of her feathers, that come out either side, this is so they can still fly, but this has only happend once since we got her. When she is molting her hormones rocket so she gets moody so I have to be careful with her. Giving her more space at this time is so important.
Bella comes out 3 times a day for an hour at at time, sitting on the top of the door or on her cage, in the widow. She has view of the road and people pass all the time. I am sure she likes this keeping her little brain active by watching people come and go.
The Grey Parrot needs stimulating daily through many different means, one is playing with toys made from many different materials. Wood is her favourite and knowing the types of wood is safe and being a wood carver gives me great simple ideas for her toys
Other toys made from hard plastic are great for her, baby toys Straws and many other household items gives me a wide variety to choose from.
I am learning that certain objects scare her but others don’t, like my electric razor that she loves and she will come and find me just to look at it. But show her a cardboard tube and she backs away. Water is a other thing she is attracted to, like the Bath running or the shower running. But she hates being sprayed. Something she needs daily to stop dust mites.
I always wanted to hold her but she is funny with hands, she will step onto my hand to bring her out of her cage, step onto my hand from the door but then will go for my hand on other occasions. They say there testing when they bite and bite can be determined in different ways.
She will walk with me on my hand and if I talk to her she will sit happy, lately she grips my finger but doesn’t put any force behind it, which is nice. The power in the beak is scary, she was in molt when I sat her on my shoulder and she gripped my ear and went through to the otherside.
I new it was my fault and I don’t blame her. There is a difference from a bird with aggressive behaviour and one that every so often nips or bites. Its all about the bond and pupil signs and body posture. Understanding any animal takes hours of patience and love and attention.
The long journey wi continue and many more stories will follow about our loving Bella.