||Six months old|
||New York, New York, USA|
was sitting at my Uptown Manhattan home office at dinnertime on July 30th
of this year when I noticed a bright yellow bird sitting on the fire escape
railing - a first for me in a long stint in this city. I simply wanted to
photograph it and not scare it away. I got more than I bargained for.
"Goldie" became a companion almost immediately. By some miracle, not ever
having taken care of a bird, a neighbor produced a new cage for me the next
day, and I was off to Birdland.
Goldie is an extremely sharp and alert companion - perhaps a bit demanding,
but knowing her beauty and worth. She's taught me a lot, and I've been
gratified to see her becoming a hale and hearty young bird. She is a Yellow
budgerigar - Melopsittacus undulatus, and as best I can tell, about six months old.
She's feisty and tough - already having smacked into a living room mirror
with no damage to report on either bird or glass. There are no tricks to
report, but she's brilliant at figuring out how to attack problems and
learning routes in her cage toward any desired object. She loves to
shadow-box with her reflection in shiny Mylar film (video) - the type used to coat
windows for blocking the sun's rays. I've seen her even pick up the end of a
lamp cord (string) and hang it outside of the cage so that it would be out of
her way on a particular perch. What she lacks in talking she makes up for in
alertness and passion. Her warble is a thing of beauty, at any rate. Her
persistence is unmatched. I have trained her to enjoy a concrete perch when
she's out of the cage. She loves to fly by my head during her daily sortees.
I had no intention of being a pet owner, and now - per Goldie - I am!
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