Bird People

Posted by Bird Tricks on

I was at my place of employment last week when some customers came through pushing their greater sulphur crested cockatoo in one of those cool bird strollers. I dropped everything I was supposed to be doing and went over to greet them. The owners could barely get a word in as their bird gave me a detailed description of his day, his family’s day and the whole history of the universe starting with the big bang. The chattiest bird I have ever met.

As I walked back to my work, I overheard a customer say: “That’s the most ridiculous contraption I have ever seen. Can you imagine spending money on something so frivolous in this economy??” I quietly said: “But the bird was so happy to be out and about.” The customer shot back with: “That’s my point! IT’S A BIRD!”

I could feel the eyes of my co-workers on me as they waited for me to launch into a lecture about bird’s rights. I did not. I never once pointed out the error in her thinking as she bought a $450 gown to wear to the Captain’s ball on her upcoming cruise; a necessity in these hard times, I’m sure. But, the customer is always right. Even when they’re wrong.

I share a wonderful relationship with my co-workers. They accept me for who I am and simply regard my thing for birds as an eccentricity. In return for letting me be me, I don’t bore them with bird related conversation. When I am asked why I love parrot so much, I have learned to keep my answers short: “They’re beautiful.” “They’re funny.” “They’re smart.” Anything more than that results in glazed-over eyes and a polite “Excuse me. I think I hear someone calling me.”

If I were able to hold the average Joe’s attention for long enough to give the real reason that I love parrots, I  would probably find myself at a loss for words. What DOES make a bird person tick? Why do we put up with the noise, the mess and the expense?  Why do we struggle to find the answers to the myriad of problems we face? Why do we care so deeply?

For me, it’s the personal and spiritual growth I have experienced in the company of birds. Even as I sit here in front of a computer, in an air conditioned house, they make me feel in touch with nature. I think the thing which strikes me most deeply is the ongoing battle to communicate. The idea that two completely different species of beings would expend so much effort trying to find the means to express themselves is deeply touching to me. As life changes, so do the tasks in finding a meeting of the minds. Then one day, you look your bird in the eyes and know you both understand. There’s nothing like that feeling.

Running a close second is my need to obtain knowledge about them. I know I will never reach the point where I say to myself: “I have learned enough. I can be an exceptional bird owner knowing what I know now.”  This is not good enough for me. I will always be searching to learn more and, fortunately, advances in science keep me well stocked with opportunities.

The noise? The mess? The expense? Whatever.These minor inconveniences are trivial in comparison to what I gain everyday because I am fortunate enough to share my life with parrots.

What drives your passion for birds?

Author Patty Jourgensen specializes in avian health, behavior and nutrition and has been working with and caring for rescue birds since 1987.

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    wzmocnienia rz?s.
    W minionym czasie dosz?o do odkrycia w dziedzinie wyd?u?ania rz?s, bowiem jest szeroka gama artyku?ów powsta?ych dla przed?u?enia rz?s.

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    Od?ywka do rz?s REALASH to niekwestionowany nr 1 na ?wiecie w?ród od?ywek do rz?s –
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    z ca?ego ?wiata.

    Realash opinie on
  • We had a wild caught mitered conure. She allowed us to live with her for 28 years but then passed. Now we have a hand raised baby blue crown conure. He is very talkative and knows what he is saying. Our mitered did too but it was hard to decypher what she said. Since we knew her so well we could usually figure out what she was saying even if it was not clearly a human word. No mistaking the blue crown though. When something tastes good, he says “that’s good” When we offer him something new he asks “is it good?” He has about a 15 expression vocabulary so far and it is real communication. There is some alone practice of his sayings but when we are there it is a communication effort. Birds are as much a part of a family as a pet dog and usually even more in need of social interaction. A child is at home for maybe 18 years which is LESS than a pet parrot.

    Bill Shenefelt on
  • Reading the extremely entertaining article about the chatty bird in the stroller,I simply have to
    put in my two cents worth .I was aghast at the reactionof the joyless Grinches who loubly
    complained about the frovolity of wasting money on strollers for a parrot. SHESH! eVERY
    person who owns a parrot knows that they’e not just ‘birds’ – they’e little miniature humans
    with distinct personality and minds and wills ( and moods!) of their own.To those miserable
    wwet blankets who were unable to enjoy and appreciate the intelligence and humor of this
    utterly delightful cockatoo, I can only echo Donna’s sentiments – ’ Shut the f**k up!!’
    There’s little enough joy in the world -

    Patricia Jessup on
  • Candice, your beautiful indepth story brought tears to my eyes. Your bird Ares has put you on a lovely path with your choosen career.

    I wish you every success .

    Petra Coffs Harbour Australia on
  • Candice,
    The connections we have with our birds never cease to astound me. I can’t tell you the number of accounts I have heard where people’s birds are literally the thing that keeps them going everyday. And now yours. Thanks for sharing your touching story.

    Patty on

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