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PrettyBird, Part 2

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avatar barrowisp
Level 12 : Journeyman Explorer
In The Beginning...

"Chicken" hatched March 21, 2016 in a pet shop of the Pacific Northwest (USA). I didn't meet her until March 31, 2018. But I've observed other conures just a few months old, and they're so silly!

Chicken lived with Troy and Cami, their teenaged son, and 3 dogs. Chicken spent several hours each day outside her cage, riding around inside Troy's robe/shirt/jacket, or on Cami's shoulder/head, playing with her hair. But Troy became increasingly unwell, with a terminal brain disease. As the family became preoccupied with caring for Troy, Chicken spent more time in her cage, and less time the center of attention. She became noisier, no doubt wanting to be let out and held. Troy worried that she wasn't getting enough attention, and that his family would be unlikely to be in a position to provide it anytime soon.

Cami shared all this with Daniel (her coworker, and my husband). He had lived with a few birds over the years, and they thrived with each other. I didn't have any close-up experience with birds, but we had talked about maybe getting a bird someday, and Cami started to talk with Daniel about the possibility of Chicken moving in with us.

At the end of March, they drove to our home with two large cages, and Chicken in a tiny cage. Her wings trembled, and she cried rhythmically with what I now consider her distress call. Troy showed us how to spot when she was planning to poop (giving us a chance to minimize the damage) and talked through her care routine and treats (which include popcorn and apple).

She stayed in the living room for probably a month, with short trips on Daniel's shoulder while refilling her water bowl. We were hyper-vigilant about the front door out of concern that she'd get out, but now we're confident that she'd sit possessively on our shoulders while we open the door to pick up deliveries. She wants to be wherever we are, and we're like magnets to her when she flies around the house; we can be sure she'll land on some part of us!

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