I am owned by a flock of eight birds. This comes to four cockatiels, one finch, two parakeets and one yellow cheek Amazon.
In the videos are BJ and Nye who are roommates. Even though all my tiels are males, these two show that even men can be divas. They constantly show us their feathers and pose for us to shower accolades on them. BJ is a white face cockatiel and he was born in December of 1998. Nye, a normal grey, is the son of my first bird ever and he was born in 2001.
They are pretty mellow birds for the most part. Being around birds since 1998 has been an experience. Like other pets, these have their own unique and distinct personalities. They will love you forever, and all they ask is for you to love them back.
This is Jasper. He is staring at the oven. The very appliance I had just placed a casserole in to cook for dinner. When I took this picture he had been waiting for 15 minutes already with 30 more to go.
This is a common occurrence in my house when anyone cooks. The bird will climb up to as high as he can and just wait for whatever is being prepared for the family ah well in his mind him. Once I leave the kitchen he will yell at me loudly as if to say,”Wait where are you going? You need to be back in the kitchen cooking so I can eat. You know it is all about me me me.” That is what it sounds like as he yells and tries to motivate me to go back to the stove.
If that is not bad enough when I set the table he will slide down his cage, cross his bird stand and climb onto the nearest chair and pace back and forth as he waits. Really bird? I mean really? It just makes me think of the people who have told me in my life that my bird is stupid. He is anything but.
He knows the word no and when to use it. His latest accomplishment has been to learn the phrase, “I know.” So now when I talk to him he will sit on his rail and go, “ I know.” as if he is a dear friend listening to me complain as he sympathizes with me.
He is really an amazing bird and has taught all of us here so much about animal behavior and their personalities. These fascinating creatures are more than just a pet. They infuse themselves into our lives especially one that can talk back to you. Though my favorite line he has every learned has been,” Mom where where where?” which is his way of asking where am I in the house if he does not see me. Does he mimic us…absolutely. But with that mimicking he is learning to interact with us on a different level as he learns when to use certain phrases at the right time.
I know a lot of people don’t get it as over the years I have heard people make fun of me being owned by a flock of birds. My response has always been, “Well you have probably never been owned by one of these splendid animals or taken the time to know them.” They love me as much as any dog or cat I have ever owned in my life. I have tried to imagine how it was before I was adopted by my first birds, Maxie and Twopiece, in 1998 but that is a blur to me. Twopiece is still with me and is my little buddy who sits by my desk on many a day.
I am owned by eight birds and know it. This is not something I would change for the world.
If you could be any animal in the world what would it be? This is an easy question for me… a bird. Anyone who knows me will realize I am a bird lover and in fact owned by 8 birds. It all started in 1998 when my family was living in an apartment complex. To have a dog or cat meant paying an extra $250.00 per month which to me was absurd. I love animals but come on. When I asked the manager what animals could we have that did not incur the fee he told me anything I could put in a cage or tank.
That is how it all started. I researched cockatiels for over 6 months, making sure I was not getting in over my head with an animal I had never had before. Soon Maxie and Twopiece came into our lives, a bonded pair that puts most marriages to shame in their love for each other. As the years passed, more birds started to come into our home.
The reaction I got was mixed. Some thought it was cruel to keep birds in cages. This I do agree with but the ones I had were born and bred in captivity and it was all they knew. My birds are out constantly. Others said that they didn’t consider birds pets, and to those people I would say “ Apparently you have never been owned by one.” The last group were fellow bird owners who understood my fascination and love I had for my birds.
My birds are not just pets to look at and enjoy. They help me in ways that are immeasurable. With me being disabled, I do get my share of surgeries and treatments. These little feather animals always seem to know when I am hurting or not feeling good. They will sit on my shoulder and either groom me, sing softly in my ear or just keep me company knowing this is exactly what I need. They love me unconditionally and all they ask in return is love back- isn’t that one thing all family members want? I don’t even say I own birds, rather I am owned by them. Anytime I need to unwind, have a crappy day, or just need to forget they are there happily to share their joy with me. They each have their own personality which makes them stand out. I can now tell by the singing which one one my birds it is. They truly give me a joy that is priceless
I guess in retrospect my birds are not pets. They are in reality my family. I wake up to them singing and go to bed hearing their tiny snores. I would not have it any other way. Yeah I might be that crazy lady in the park feeding pigeons down the road, but it will be with a new understanding and appreciation of them then I have had before.
My finch Nilla
These are the boys. Left to right- BJ,Angel, Twopiece and Nye
Two parakeets I rescued this past Spring – Left to right- Snowball and Cory