OKAY remember you askedWhat????Mr.Peepers in a shoe box???Do I have alzheimers did you tell us that and I don't remember? Please tell it again for those of us who wake up in a new world every day.
Mr. Peepers Story -
On October 18th 2006 while standing in line at the bank. I was –eavesdropping- on the conversation between two ladies directly behind me
One of the women was telling the other about this bird she had given to her neighbor but the neighbor had recently returned it to her.
She went on the say another friend of hers had recently purchased the bird but believed she was allergic to it; so she had put it outside onto her patio.
[This was in October in northern California when the temperature was around 50 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and dropping between 35 - 40 degrees Fahrenheit in the evenings. We had a cold spell just the week following and the temperature had dropped into the high 20’s at night; he would not have survived one night out in that weather]
The lady said she felt sorry for the poor little thing out in the cold so she told her friend she had a neighbor that had birds and she would call her to see if she would take it.
She called and her neighbor agreed to take the bird.
The lady's neighbor called her a few days later to say it wasn’t working out and she needed to give the bird back to her.
The lady said her neighbor had put the bird into the cage with her two parakeets and it had been repeatedly attacked and wouldn’t come off the floor of the cage. Her neighbor told her she didn’t think “they wanted to be friends” and she should come and get the bird.
So the lady took the bird back and had it at home in a SHOEBOX.
At this point I had turned around and excused myself for eavesdropping on their conversation - I asked what kind of bird this was - the lady said it was a Parrotlet and the poor little thing was scared to death.
My Senegal had died about a year and a half before this and being a bird lover, I was horrified from the conversation I had just overheard on this bird.
- So I broke into my Parrot care speal -
I was going on how she HAD to get this bird housed properly and out of the shoe box [which apparently it had been in for the past FEW DAYS] – I asked her what she was feeding it and advised her on what she needed to buy – I told her I would get her the phone number to my Avian Vet and told her the location of our local bird shop.
I was spouting everything that entered my head all the while holding back from choking her for not knowing any of this – In hindsight, I’m glad I didn’t because after all she was a good Samaritan and rescued the bird from sure death.
When I was done ranting – she said, “you seem to know a lot about birds do you want it”? – Even though after my Senegal’s death I swore no more birds – BUT without hesitation I said, “YES”.
The next thing I knew I was following this lady back to her house.
There was a rush of thoughts running through my head.
- I hope the bird is still alive when we get there.
- I have to get my cage out of storage but I think the bar spacing is too wide [which it was].
- I need to pick up a cage and supplies.
- For all this lady knows I could be a murderer she invited to follow her to her house
- Should I bring the bird home first or should I drive directly to the bird store?
- And so on and so on ….
When we got to the lady’s home she went into her Kitchen and came back with this old cardboard box with US postal tape wrapped around it and an EBay label adhered to it – she handed it to me and said be careful, it bites. I don’t remember our conversation after that; I think I was holding my breath.
When I peeked into the box I saw this tiny parrot beak attached to a tiny green bird cowering in the corner of the box looking up at me – the whole thing was surreal and absolutely pathetic.
I reached in, cupped him in my hand and held him against my chest – he didn’t bite or utter a sound all I could feel was his heart pounding.
The lady said she was shocked because she hadn’t been able to touch him. I think I said something to her like how much are you selling him for – she said, nothing she was just glad to find him a home – I thanked her, told her she did a wonderful thing by taking him in – assured her he will have the best home – placed him back in the box and left.
When I got to my car I took him out again [got a little nip this time] – noticed his wings were clipped and he was Oh, SO small.
The box was lined with paper towels – one side was wet [I assumed the lady had a bowl of water in there that she must have removed] – some bread, broccoli, bird dropping stains and feathers.
The lady at the Bird Shop told me he was a male Pacific Parrotlet and said he was young. He had no band but from his eyes she estimated his age to be around four months – which gave him a birth month of June 2006. She said from his reactions he was hand raised but scared.
I was more saddened about him being so young and what he had already had to endure – he was literally just a baby.
My Vet agreed with the age the bird store had estimated and although a bit under weight, surprisingly gave him a clean bill of health.
I have had him now for 7 months and have added a female Parrotlet to the house – Mrs. Penny Peepers.
The Peepers are very happy together –