For this month’s Meet My Parrot article, we’re going to meet Marius Torsan from Romania and his flock, Mishu the Senegal and Maya the African Grey. Over to Marius who tells us his story.
This story starts in early 2000 when I didn’t know anything about Parrots or birds.
We used to have a puppy but he passed away. In that period there were very few vets in my country and we could not save him.
Our family were great pets lovers so we suffered a lot when he passed away. I promised myself and my family that we wouldn’t suffer that pain again so soon. So I started to look after Parrots, knowing that some species live ten years in captivity.
Unfortunately in that period (early 2000’s) in my country there were no laws protecting pets so traffic with birds captured in the wild was something common.
One day, in a so called pet shop, close to my son’s birthday, I saw Mishu, the Senegal. A playful piece of rainbow ! Sitting in a very small cage without toys …
I decided to take him home as a present for my son’s birthday. And the Senegal came to our house exactly on November 8th, when the orthodox religion celebrates St Michael. Of course we called him Mishu which in Romanian mean “little Michael”. From the beginning we offered Mishu a larger cage, good food and freedom to fly around the room.
Even though he wasn’t willing to interact with humans at first, Mishu was a fast learner and a very clever and intelligent companion. I cannot call Mishu our pet, he is just one of our family members !
Even though he was treated well, Mishu started plucking and did this for about 2 years. Until … one day, having dinner in a small restaurant near my office I saw Coco. He was an African Grey sitting in the entrance, outside in cold weather being stressed and scared by the people crossing by. I liked her from the beginning.
In the next 5 months I spent all my lunch time in the office going to meet Coco, scratching her, talking to her and bringing her bottle caps to play with.
In that year, due to the pass over calendar, we had 5 days off and the owner of Coco was annoyed that he needed to come to feed her and give her water during this mini holiday. So … I offered to take her home and take care about. And, with about two month’s wages, I convinced the owner !
From that moment on Coco become our newest family member. And Mishu’s best friend ! They both learned so much one from another and spent a lot of time playing together or preening together.
In the summer of 2016 Coco passed away … probably due to some illnesses from the past. She was also captured in the wild.
We were all devastated but Mishu was the most devestated. He refused to come out of his cage for over a week, just sitting on his perch looking on the wall or on Coco’s empty cage.
We were worried about him so we decided to take him another friend. This time we bought our Parrot from a selected breeder, with medical exams and a DNA certificate.
This was Maya, a baby African Grey. We took Maya in when she was a little baby. She didn’t know how to sit on a perch ! Or what is water for … I personally fed her 4 times per day with a syringe and, after she got scared about an earthquake we had, I took her to sleep with me in bed !
She is now almost ten months and guess what? Mishu is her friend and protector ! They fly around, playing as two kids with the same toys at the same time ! Foraging and noise making toys are their favourites. And chewing ones, the same as any Parrot !
We take both of them outside in the park in their personalized backpacks and they both like it so much. They whistle and make a lot of noise outside especially when they hear other birds.
Maya was on pellets from the beginning and Mishu followed her and “converted” himself onto the same food. Grapes and pomegranates are among their favourites. Mishu especially likes it and, believe it or not, a 150 grams bird, can slit pomegranates around a 24 square meters room !
Our son does not leave with us anymore. But we still have two kids which we love and bring us love and happiness.
Parrots are funny, playful, smart and can bring owners proof of love as any other pet. But, as any other pet, they need to be cared for. It’s not easy but having an animal companion is, it’s a matter of responsibility.
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