My pet bird blog:
Harley, a Timneh African Grey; and fond memories of a thousand Finsters, and Peanut, a green-rumped parrotlet who died in 2006.

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The Finster Log

Somebody Needs To Get His Wings Clipped

Posted on: 03/29/08, 10:49:00
Harley has been easily startled lately. We think there are two things causing this. First, he was definitely bothered by having Oolong in hospice care. In fact, he hardly sits on the perch on the stove anymore, which used to be his favorite spot. Frankly, there aren't that many spots for him to be in this small apartment, so losing one — particularly his favorite — has been trying, to say the least.

Second, it's Spring — although you wouldn't know it by the weather around here — and the University's track teams have started practicing. Ann Arbor is quite flat, and I live on one of the steepest hills in town. So all sorts of people sprint up it for practice, including the track teams, which are housed just a few blocks away. I used to find this very entertaining, silly people in matching clothes running up and down over and over again (especially, I'll be honest, when they run around in those tiny shorts). But Harley hates it, so now I do too. Too much activity out his window. Very nervous-making.

I can fly!
I don't know exactly what got him going the other day, but he got startled off his cage and went flying toward the kitchen. Unfortunately, I wasn't there, arm held out, to provide a landing pad — and he's smart enough to know that the perch on the stove (assuming he wanted to be on that in the first place) won't hold his weight for a landing. So he made a sharp left turn, and flew UP about four feet to land on the bracket holding the blinds.

Awesome! Except he didn't want to get down for a few minutes. So I took a mediocre photograph while he looked around for awhile. (Try to ignore those cobwebs up there, will you? I've gotten pretty good at it. I'd be happy to give you lessons, if you're interested. Besides, think of how flutterpated the Finsters would get if I did something about them!)

We've got an appointment with the bird stylist on Monday: wing feathers and toenails. Meanwhile, it looks like a move to a bigger place, with less activity out the windows, is in our future.

By the way, thanks to everyone for your kind words about Oolong. It's been a little tough realizing that her last few days were so hard for Harley. Who knew such a tiny, soft thing could be so scary? But I guess death is death, after all.

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