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The Tale of Freddie The Lovebird

The tale of Freddie The Lovebird

It was a normal autumn day, wet and cold when I went to do the afternoon feed. I spotted this barely feathered scrap of a thing on the floor of the Peach Faced Lovebirds aviary, it was still dry and quite warm so had not been out long, I poked him back in the nest box with his mum and dad for the night, they must have known what was to come because they promptly evicted him again which is unusual so I tucked him in my collar under my hair and carried on feeding because by now the light was fading fast.

He must of though this was home from home as he snuggled in and went to sleep; I finished up and went in to feed my kids, if only that was as easy as feeding the birds. All the time this little chap was snuggled up asleep, once I had got them all fed and watered it was time to sort out some accommodation for Freddie as we had decided to call him after our bird keeping friend across the road, I had already packed away the brooder for the winter and apart from the fact he only had his flight feathers he was all but fully grown, it was decided to put him in a tissue lined nest box to sleep as the fire was going and it was nice and cosy indoors.

Maybe that was my first mistake, being that a nest box has a hole in it he wouldn't stay in there until every one had gone to bed and the lights were turned off. Only then was he happy for me to put him up to the hole and he would hop in and settle down this went on for quite some time until we got a green cheeked conure that he buddied up with then he took to roosting on top of his cage instead. As time went on so he got more and more suicidle and took to pinching food through the bars of Snowy the Lesser Sulphur Crested Cockatoo's cage, much to the annoyance of Snowy who would climb down to get him only for Freddie to slip around the other side of the cage and carry on.

In some ways Snowy was his hero, evenings when Snowy was out for his play time in a box of junk containing bits of wood, cardboard packets and allsorts of things like a kids toy box Freddie would sit on the side of the box watching all these things go flying and sometimes get so excited fall in the box ,to be scorned at by Snowy and make a quick retreat for about two seconds then he would be sitting on Snowys back looking over his shoulder to get a better view which was equally scorned, but that was how he liked to live, just one heart beat away from danger.

By now winter had made way for summer and he had now got his full suit of feathers and was a fine looking pied yellow and green so I thought it was time for him to go back outside and find a mate, apart from the fact that he was "bonking" everything insight either with or without feathers he wasn't fussed, in fact he had one particular furry toy of my daughters that he had a marked liking for and would disappear now and again to be found up on the shelf with it, but soon became unhappy with that idea so in he came again .

By now he had also realised that things were going on outside and he was missing much of the action, he took to sitting on the edge of the particular opened upstairs window with his head turned around so that he could see down the gap of course from outside he was obscured by the window frame but you could hear him alright ,he would whistle and shout when anyone went past the door {either front or back depending were he was watching from].

Well, I suppose it was bound to happen, with little kids about, one day he got out, he was having the time of his life showing off to the rest of the lovebirds that he wasn't stuck in a flight and could come and go as he liked, but there was no way he was going to go in there. When indoors he would fly over to me at one call but out here was a different matte, although he would come close enough to touch he was not going to be caught, he was off and we followed in pursuit fearing the worst as we have a hawk that often roosts in a large tree in a garden the other side the road and its not often you see any escapees twice around here.

Next he was in Fred's garden winding up his birds and so it went on during the day wind my birds up then Fred's until he got fed up and landed on Fred's shoulder who took him indoors to capture him and bring him across the road, he opened up his hands and Freddie just flew around chirping to everybody telling them what an adventure he had been on.

As the days went on he was getting harder and harder to find when I came in from outside, one thing was for sure though was he was up to no good. He found that the wicker lampshade made a nice lookout, especially with the hole he had eaten out of the side and modified it into a swing so he didn't have to hang upside down in it anymore, he decided he needed another hole to see out the other way but that was a mistake because the whole thing unthreaded and ended up in bits.

Sadly, for Freddie, his demise came when I was out for the day, he had never been anywhere near the other birds only Snowy, but this particular day he took a fancy to Paddy the Patagoneons nest box, I still can't figure out how he ever got through the bars but try as I can, I cannot help but feel he would never have been happy any other way than living within a breath of death and would have died of boredom kept in a cage for any length of time. Freddie had lived his life to the full. But sadly, I still miss him, and know that he was one of a kind.

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