Saturday, October 10, 2009

Calling all Parrots

Pepe has gone AWOL.
There are times, every now and then, when I really hate what we try to do and feel like throwing in the towel. We have no idea where Pepe went and he was certainly not ready for the wild. After the latest kidnappings we can't help but fear the worst.

The overly-humanized beasties we encounter cause us considerable dilemma: they clearly love people far more than they love parrots and to throw them into an aviary full of strange green things whilst their beloved humans sip tea on the veranda is cruel and unkind and doesn't help their rehab. They respond so much better when they are allowed to adjust at their own speed. The pre-kidnap Chili would rant continuously if we dared to subject her to accommodation fit only for birds. Nowadays, she's not so fussy - just grateful to be home, I guess. But Pepe was a total home-body. He looked with disdain upon the aviary residents, and would dive-bomb the velociraptors if they dared to get too close to Jerry. Morning tea was a ritual and no day was complete without a ride on the motorbike.

We have our critics, and at times like this I find it hard to defend the logic. Yes, if we caged the bird it would still be here. Yes, if we clipped its wings we would still enjoy its company. But... birds are supposed to fly and humans are supposed to let them and we could not entertain that we exist to perpetuate the misconception that birds are better off in human care. Right? Of course right. Might as well change our name to Hattieville.

So, with Milo happily ensconced in the aviary and Chili grounded for a few more months, we are devoid of indoor aerobatics. Blue and the V-bombers still give us a display in the mornings, but my word, we miss Pepe. Maybe he'll find his way home, eventually...

In the meantime, if anyone encounters a rather precocious red lored that can whistle a bugle call and say "come on Pepe" in the same voice as the pea-soup girl in The Exorcist, please give us a shout.


  1. Hang in there. Even if the worst has happened and Pepe has died while out on his own, he lived a better life because of you. I hope he comes back safe and sound.

  2. I hope he comes back to hang out with you and Jerry.
    We raised a starling (i know, not many people would) and when he got old enough he just lived outside in an open cage--by day he'd forage and hang out with us (if we were outside) and at night he'd roost in his cage (we always left it open). One day he flew away and never came back. I missed him, but hopefully he found other starlings to be with. No other bird we raised and "turned loose" (acclimated to being able to come and go at will) like that hung out stayed sociable with us for very long. They got the wild back in them almost right away.

  3. Hi guys,
    thanks for the encouragement. Yes, we are hoping that if Pepe is alive and well he's hanging out with parrots and not trapped in a cage for the rest of his life. We have had our 'house' birds go wild almost overnight before, so it's not beyond the realms of possibility that this is what Pepe did. And yes Wilma, at the end of the day you are right - quality of life over longevity every time. Still miss him though. :-(