Monday, January 7, 2008

Flying and Mr. Popular

A relatively new development that I don't think I've mentioned yet here is that Beeps has been flying with volition! For quite some time he would fly someplace when we'd launch him in the direction and tell him to "go to your cage" or "go to your stand." However, he now will often choose to fly someplace and can navigate corners and other surprises (e.g. if a door he expects to be open is closed, he doesn't run into the door, he quickly adjusts his path mid-air). He's not as proficient of a flyer as Max is, but we are so proud of him! We expect that he will continue to improve on his flying skills.

Lately, Thomas and I have been playing catch with Beeps. I'll give him a gentle toss and say "go to Thomas" and then we praise him when he does. Then Thomas will give him a gentle toss and say "go to Mary" and Beeps flies to me. When he flies, it seems to take much more effort than it does for Max. He really has to flap those wings! His flying style is very similar to Calypso's -- we're not sure if that's how caiques fly, or if it has something to do with the fact that these guys never learned to fly as babies.

Thomas was sitting at the kitchen table reading a book. Beeps was on his stand when, without warning, he decided to fly to Thomas's arm. Thomas has been working quite a bit lately, so the parrots are happy when he is home and they try to spend time with him.

Max is extremely jealous of Beeps, so when she saw that Beeps was on Thomas's arm, she had to fly to the table so she could also be near Thomas. At that moment, Rocky was climbing up Thomas's pant leg, also trying to be close to him. I snapped this picture, and was so pleased at how well it turned out. Max was threatening Rocky and trying to have Thomas all to herself.

Thomas grumbles about the fact that the parrots give him so much attention, but deep down I think he really likes it.

I didn't get any pictures of this, but last night he was playing video games, and Beeps, Max, and Rocky were all vying for his attention. Rocky and Beeps would be happy to share him, but Max wants him all to herself, so this can cause problems. She is just incredibly jealous of Beeps in particular.

This morning as I was bringing Max and Beeps into the bathroom to shower with me, Calypso flew over and landed on my back. I was so pleased because he didn't want to be left out and he was flying! Calypso knows how to fly, but prefers to fly with help. I think it's a confidence issue. I support his chest as he flies around the house. This is one of his favorite things to do. Whenever he chooses to fly unaided, I reinforce like crazy because I want him to be as proficient of a flyer as Max. Also, because of Calypso's background, when he takes proactive steps to be part of the family, it gives me hope that he'll be able to put the past completely behind him someday and be a "normal" bird.

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