Friday, June 23, 2006
This is Henry
I introduce to you, Henry, our Indian Rose-ringed Parakeet. He's one of our sweet birds. He's the biggest of our parakeets. We got Henry about a year 1/2 ago. I've posted in the past about Henry and his partner, Fonda, whom we lost about 3 mths ago. Henry had a tough time after first losing Fonda, but I'm happy to say that he seems to be getting along quite well now.
He's taken up to mimicing the other three birds and has gotten so good at it that I can no longer tell if he's talking or if it's Stedman, one of our other males. Henry does all of the same calls and even adds on his own little endings and extras. Before, when his partner, Fonda, was still with us, he hardly talked at all. He'd scream a lot when he wanted out of his cage, but he'd never talk. Now, he says all kinds of things, including "hey Oprah", "hello", "pretty bird", and he mumbles a lot which, to me, sounds like he's trying to mimic what I've said.... which is adorable to listen to. It's soooo sweet and cute. You wouldn't imagine... unless, you've had birds and they've done the same. He makes me laugh and really has a way of pulling on my heart strings. I love 'em so much.
He loves green chilis, cherries, apples, bread, and these little dried things that come in the food that we get... they have all of these seeds inside. He takes them as quick as he can from me and will eat every last piece of it. He also loves pumpkin seeds and peanuts. He also loves dried red peppers... he'll crack them open to expose the seeds inside and then ever so gently will take out the seeds w/ his tongue and break them apart inside of his beak. I love to watch him eat. He takes food from my fingers and has never tried to bite me. He never ceases to take food from me but if he's not interested, he'll let whatever it is immediately fall to the ground. He's picky that way.
He loves showers which I give to him courtesy of a water spritzer/old glass cleaner bottle. He'll open his wings when I'm showering him and turn around so that I can get his back feathers. I talk to him softly as I do it... he seems to love it. I tell him how sweet he is all the time... I think it helps to calm him and make 'em happy. He is sweet though.... I'd love to give him sugars... but he'd never allow it! ;)
After Fonda got out and never came back, I didn't think Henry would make it alone. He screamed for days on end and seemed very depressed. But after a few weeks of individual attention, he came out of his shell. He talks so much now that I can hardly believe it. I talk to him a lot and introduce new words to him and new whistles - he's picked up most of the whistles. The words... well, we're still working on words and prob always will. He's very stubborn and only says what he wants. Sometimes, he'll surprise me and say something that I've said out of the blue and that's when I realize that he does listen... more than I thought.
He's still very shy and won't allow me to pick him up, altho I'd love to. He has the softest feathers that I've ever felt. He also has the sweetest eyes and looks right at me when I call to him. He'll whistle and look at me to see if I'm watching him... it's so cute. I put a mirror in his cage after we lost Fonda and he started talking to it and sleeping by it... now... he's just tearing up the wood around the mirror, but that's ok because I know he's better. We'd still love to get him a mate but, as of yet, we haven't found one. We told the guy that brought him to us about Fonda and he said he'd look for another but there's been no luck so far.
We cleaned his cage today and he was soooo good. He was a little nervous but he didn't fly out or act crazy like we thought he might. He came out, finally, after we were finished and sat on top of his cage for a bit... and then when it was time to take him back, he went back in w/out a problem. I was so happy and really felt like he is at ease and at home now. At least that's what I hope.... I'm just really glad that he feels better now.
I still think about Fonda... his mate. I wonder about her... wonder if she's ok. Hope that she is. She was such a shy bird. I also get mad when I think about it because the housemaid is the one that came and got us to tell us that she was gone. Now, I wonder if she had something to do w/ it. After seeing how much she lied... and since the FIRST words out of her mouth that morning were "mu ana" (not me), I wonder. She liked to do things to the birds. They were all terrified of her, but she'd pretend and tell me how much they loved her, and how much Henry talked to her, but I found it interesting how he wasn't comfortable around her when I was in the room w/ her. One of our other birds tried to attack her any time she'd get close to their cage. When we left for vacation, we put a camera in the room to watch her w/ the birds, and she knew it. We know because she told the guy who was watching our house and wanted to know if we had cameras set up everywhere or if they were on the computers... I knew she was a lot smarter than ppl thought!
I just hope that Fonda is living a happy life.... free from the cage that bound her.