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Meet My Parrot

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I have a parrot. He is probably evil.

We got Birby when I was in fourth grade, after we had gotten a Cockatiel named Gabby (a poor second-hand bird we got for free because his owners hated how loud he could get). When I was in fourth grade, Black-headed Caiques were too exotic and scary. I preferred the Cockatiels (we wound up getting Gabby a friend, a bird with likely mental deficiencies who bullied him like it was going out of style named Maneena).

When we got Birby, he seemed really friendly. We were going to name him T-Rex. Not sure why, but mom found a picture of them online and liked what the website had named them. So he (we THINK it’s a he) became Birby. Caiques are not sexually dimorphic.

If I recall correctly, Birby’s first victim was my aunt. She had gotten him to fall asleep in her arms. He then woke up and proceeded to bite her.

Birby’s antisocial behavior began to take on patterns. First, it was only directed at people outside of the “flock” that he just didn’t like. Then it got so that he couldn’t tolerate ANYBODY.

Emily came out of that with a bloody bird bite on her shoulder and one on her finger. Despite our precautions, that happened to a couple other people while we lived in that house.

When we moved to Germany, he bit my mom. That was weird because she was the primary feeder.

I took on that job soon after that. And, as far as I’m aware, my father (Birby’s faaaaaaaavorite), my brother, and myself are the only people who can regularly come into contact with Birby unscathed. Does that mean that we won’t be bitten? Heck no! I have a scar on my finger where Birby latched on that has been there for a few years now.

Anyhow, he’s a devious little thing. He tries to make himself look as cute and fluffy as possible when we have guests over so they might stick their fingers in his cage or let him out. If I’m holding him and a person gets close, he’ll bite me to get to that person. If something startles him, he’ll bite the person holding him. If he doesn’t get what he wants, he’ll bite the person holding him. I remember a morning where I had put him on my shoulder and he bit me when he decided that he wanted the banana my mom was eating.

My sister once opened an umbrella in the house when I was holding Birby. He freaked out and bit me.

I rubbed his neck the wrong way. He bit me.

I approached his cage wearing a bike helmet. He didn’t recognize me, and bit me.

About half of the time he bites, he draws blood.

On the other hand, when he’s affectionate/cute, he’s very VERY affectionate/cute. He “digs” in the rumpled towel we put on the table. He lets my father rub his neck and under his wings for long periods of time. He makes peeping noises when I speak quietly to him.

Oh, and he talks. Not very much mind (not very clear either), but it’s amusing enough to hear him rattle off words when the sink is running. Example:

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