Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Thomas and I were making bean burritos, and one of the components is a "guacamole" which is avocados, olive oil, and garlic salt. The pit fell to the floor. Neither of us could find the pit, but I was planning on doing a thorough washing of the floor the next day, so I figured I'd find it then.
The next morning, I exited the shower, to find Max playing with the avocado pit! The pit is the most posionous part. I didn't want to take the time to take a picture, and I didn't want to post this story without a picture, so we posed this one a few days later.
Monday, July 23, 2007
Thursday, July 19, 2007
Since it had been years since she had had one, I let her eat it. They're not fatal to birds or anything; it's just unhealthy. She was so happy! In the first picture, you can see that she is exclusively focusing on her treat. In the second one, she is watching me to see if I'm going to try to take it away from her. And in the third one, she is taking a break from eating, confident I'll let her keep it.
Of course, I was very careful about making sure that all of the pear jellybeans made their way entirely into the garbage next time!
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
Here is a video of Max. For those of you who can't watch youtube videos, here is a short description (the video is only 7 seconds long). It starts with Rocky screaming in another room, and Max asks, "Gimme a kiss!" I make the kiss sound, she makes the kiss sound. Then, I ask her for a kiss and she makes a fart sound!
Here is a video of Rocky just prior to bedtime. He was already in his cage. He started saying "Bye bye!" to try to get me to leave, and then he aggressively attacked his toys. I really think this is funny because he usually looks right at me as he's attacking his toys, or right after. I imagine that he imagines it's me he's attacking and not the toy! I stopped taping 3 seconds too early because right after the video, he then bit his leg, which means he's really angry!
As a side note, blogger has a service in draft where I can link videos directly from my computer, so soon I won't have to go through youtube anymore!
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Here is a picture of our new albino cory cats prior to their release in our tank. Cory cats are perhaps my favorite fish, particularly the albino ones. We prefer to get our fish as small as possible and watch them grow.
In our tank right now, we have glowlight tetras, red skirt tetras, australian rainbowfish, cory cats (albino & bronze), otos, one female betta (we named her Pat), and possibly one bristlenose pleco.
Our pleco is very mysterious. We purchased her in early 2006, and we would see her regularly. Then we didn't see her for about 4 months, and we worried that perhaps she had died and the scavengers in our tank had eaten her body. But then we saw her some more! Our last confirmed sighting of her was December 29, 2006, so it's been a little over 6 months since we've seen her. I still search every day and hope that I'll catch a glimpse!
Our tank really isn't gigantic -- 75 gallons -- but we have a ton of plants and pieces of driftwood where the fish can hide, so it's almost impossible to get an accurate count of what's in there.
Monday, July 16, 2007
What happened to Rocky? He mysteriously injured himself over the weekend. He has been playing amazingly rough with his toys lately, and we think we've discovered physical evidence of this. This first picture was taken of him after a shower. You can tell that I am taking the picture as his wings are outstretched and he is trying to show me how tough he is. I may have Thomas take a picture of him sometimes with me out of the room so you can see that his wings are not permanently outstretched!
In this close-up taken from the above picture, you can see red marks just outside of his lower mandible. What happened, Rock? He doesn't appear to be in any pain, and we'll watch it to make sure it goes away in a few days, or he'll be off to the vet.
I love how birds look when they're wet. Rocky in particular. He is such a gorgeous bird, and when he's wet, his colors change to an almost olive color. He's starting to dry, so you can see a mix of green and olive green in him.
Luckily, all of my parrots love to bathe, and they do so frequently!
Seriously, she is one of the most well-mannered parrots I have been luck enough to encounter. She isn't fearful. Over the weekend, I went downstairs into our workout area to talk to Thomas, and she came along. She perched right on the equipment, so of course I had to get some pictures!
I've probably mentioned this before, but I don't think I could be without a budgie. They have such delightful chirps and a wonderful happiness about them!
Every day, I hide several 2X4 slats around his cage. He loves to find them, take them to his water dish, and chip them up like the picture shows. We also have a roll of receipt paper hanging in his cage. All of the parrots like to chew on this. Recently, he has been taking strips of receipt paper, rolling them into balls, and depositing them in his water. You'll notice that when I was taking this picture, Max had to fly over and make an appearance!
Friday, July 13, 2007
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Rocky, in his nest under his cage.
Elsa, with just her head sticking out, and Andreas, who is almost completely out of his sleep cave.
Thomas went down to the pet store on the last day they were in business, and these uros were still there. We didn't know what would happen to them, and with the fear that they might just be let outside or killed, we purchased them. Here they are in their temporary enclosure:
We got them in for a vet visit the next day, and they were pronounced to be in surprisingly decent health. The male had healed wounds on his tail and body, most likely from being kept with other reptiles (these guys are solitary). He had a toe that was necrotic, so our vet removed the toe and put in a stitch, requiring antibiotics for a few weeks.
They both pulled through and are doing amazingly well!
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
They were pretty disappointed that the National League fell again, but they'll get on with their lives. This winning streak can't go on forever, right?
Rocky was the only one alive in 1993, when the Phillies last went to the World Series, but everyone is hoping that it might happen again soon! Luckily we have some of the good games on tape (ones the Phillies won), so we can remember what is was like back then.
Most parrots will eagerly drink out of glasses, but not Rocky! When you put a glass near him, he tips up the lip of the cup and refuses to drink what's inside -- unless you hold him like he is below in the picture! And don't worry, it may look like we're feeding him chocolate, but it's really a blender drink made from greens (turnip, collard, etc.), strawberries, and a few cashews. I also made a video of this because Rocky is so funny when he drinks!
Monday, July 9, 2007
I have never seen a bird that enjoys bathing as much as Beeps does. He takes at least one bath a day in his water dish, showers with at least (and sometimes both) of us daily, and often gets sprayed from a water bottle also. If I walk too close to their spray bottle, he starts getting excited and saying, "pretty baby!"
Here are some pictures of the caiques eating their clementines. Calypso if the fluffier one and Beeps is the wetter one.
And of course, a couple of videos! Max and Calypso eating their clementines.
I hardly have any videos of Calypso because he often freaks out when I get the camera near him. However, he also freaks out while eating his first clementine of the day, so I thought I'd capture his freak out! He does this squeal when he gets very excited about things: beloved foods, warm foods, cold foods, baths, etc. It sounds like he's in distress, but he also does it when he's happy.
I should mention that the music in the background is by the band Bowling for Soup. This is Beeps's favorite band. The other parrots also enjoy their music, but Beeps LOVES them. They were in town a few weeks ago and we contemplated smuggling him in to their concert, but then just decided to listen to their CDs instead.
He spends a lot of time under his cage. When I call him, he'll come to the front and look at me, but then goes back under. Here is one sure-fire way to get him to come out: mess with his towels. A few months ago, we realized how important the towels were to him. We were eating dinner in the living room and I had grabbed one of Rocky's towels to use as a barrier between my legs and a hot bowl of soup. He did not stop screaming during our entire dinner. When I was done eating, I threw his towel on the ground, and he RAN to it -- we then understood why he'd been screaming!
And what does he do with these towels? The video below shows what he spends most of his time doing with them. He also likes to bring them to different areas of the room and then play with the towels some more.
She lately has become obsessed with onions. That's right -- one of the food items she's not supposed to eat. For years we've kept our onions in an onion bowl on the island in our kitchen. But apparently those onions have become irresistible to Max over the past few weeks. We'd hear crunching in the kitchen and find her unpeeling the onions! We've since removed the temptation and placed our onions in a parrot-proof area.
Right before this picture was taken, I changed the garbage then threw out all of the onion skins she'd peeled. I reenter the kitchen a few minutes later to find out that she had gone to the bottom of the garbage, pulled out an onion peel, and started destroying it! We know one of her favorite things to do is pull trash out of the garbage and throw it on the floor (like a giant foraging toy), but we really thought it would be safe at the bottom of the can. I underestimated the allure of those onion skins!She has suffered no ill effects from her obsession and we have taken steps to make sure this won't happen again!
Last time she went through my purse, she came across a $20 bill (I very rarely carry any cash, but the time I did, she found it!) Luckily she just did a bit of damage to it, and I was still able to spend it, but I did worry about having a bird high on drugs as I would imagine in a body that size it wouldn't take very much, and so much cash has drug residue on it.
Here is a picture of him in the beginning stages of building his nest. Note that he has his 2 special towels near him and has begun to rip up the newspaper that we lay on the ground to protect our floors from their poop:
This is what is looks like under his cage after about 3 days of making his nest. I usually let him build for a few days, then I sweep up and he starts over again. Those towels are still in there! He has to be locked in his cage when I sweep up his nest and as soon as he is out, he starts shredding fresh newspaper and wood pieces. I have a few videos I'll add in another post.
Friday, July 6, 2007
I bought this scooter a few months ago, determined to teach someone how to ride it! So far, all 4 of my bigger birds have resisted by attempts. I have not given up on them and hope someday to use clicker training to get them to learn to ride like a pro.
However, Daphne is prefectly happy to perch on it, so I guess it wasn't a total waste! Of course, she is much too small to get this size scooter to move! But the picture was so adorable, I had to take it.
Budgies often are considered throwaway pets in our society. That's so unfortunate because people are really missing out on these little gems! She has such a fantastic personality and is a little treasure, always brightening my day!
Sometimes Rocky likes to cover his head with his wing and spy on us. His eye kind of looks cloudy in this picture, but it must just be the flash.
Thomas and I joke around with him and say things like, "We thought we had a macaw! But we can't see him anywhere!" Rocky then laughs with delight and uncovers his head.
The funny part is that when he "hides," he always makes sure that he can keep one eye on me -- his nemesis. He actually is quite obsessed with keeping tabs on his human flock and will search the house calling out our names if he doesn't know where we are.
A few weeks ago, I returned from my morning run, parched. I poured myself a glass of Gatorade and drank most of it. Then I woke up the birds and showered with Max and the caiques. As per my usual routine, I brought one of the birds upstairs with me as I got dressed and left the rest downstairs for a few minutes on their stands.
I came downstairs to find this! Poor Max was so thirsty, she had to drink my Gatorade! Nevermind her fresh bowl of water in her cage. You can see that her back is still wet from the shower.
Max is so inquisitive; she always keeps us on our toes. She has knocked over plastic glasses that were not strong enough to carry her weight, so I'm glad this at least was a glass!
Sometimes Thomas and I joke that it might be nice to have one of those greys that it afraid of everything. But we are only kidding as we love our adventurous girl who keeps us entertained with her new escapades!