|| Thirty-two years old|
|| Patagonian Conure|
|| Cleveland, Ohio, USA|
Introducing [The]Rickeybird. He has been my companion for 32 years, through school, work, marriage, divorce, marriage,
and now retirement. My longest successful non-familial relationship! We love each other
unconditionally and completely. His life expectancy is 30-35 years, but he looks and behaves
just as he did when he was one year old! He is an actor, singer, and artist! Sorta ...
I have always loved birds, all kinds, anywhere, any time. When I was in college, I was shopping at a bird store for supplies for my cockatiel. I got close to a 3-month-old Patagonian chick, who without hesitation leaped into my arms, scrambled up to my face, and said "Hello." I later tracked down his breeder, who could almost have been my twin, we looked so much alike. I'm sure he thought his "mom" had come back for him! Anyway, I was in love. He cost $500, which was a fortune for me at that time, but I made it happen, took him home, sat with him on my shoulder all night until the cage, etc., was delivered the next morning. I researched his species. They have a life span 30 years, and come originally from Patagonia. In the wild they make burrows in limestone cliffs to nest. As a domesticated bird, they social, cuddly ... okay, sounds good! I learned the hard way about the bone-rattling, ear-splitting noise level. Since getting him, I have had to take his loudness into consideration when making any and all residential, social, familial decisions!
But no complaints! He has been my buddy through school, grad school, marriage(s), jobs, and retirement. At 32, he still looks and behaves as he did at one year of age. And he's an actor, singer, and artist! Sorta. Check out his movie below to see some of his antics. And go to his eBay shop to see his "textile art". He chews shapes in his cage covers; I trim and mount them, and sell them along with my own art. So far he has sold three!!!!!! There are action photos of him in his "studio," too ... er ... cage.
Everybody in my life knows about him. His original name was Ricardo, but over the years people began calling him The Rickeybird, and it stuck. He outlasted my cockatiel, along with several dogs and cats, even a couple of relatives, some of whom he still calls now and then. My grandmother used to swear he was seeing their ghosts!
The secret(s) to his longevity? A big, clean cage, Harrison's pellets, supplemented by fresh fruits/veggies, one big green chile a day (cubanelle, poblano or BigJim), a television to watch, big windows to look out of, SAFE toys, a bath every now and then (in a big wok), a trip to an avian vet every ten years (well, it's the truth), and love. From me. He pretty much hates everybody else. There have been times when I was so busy that I didn't have much time to be with him. But morning at sun-up and evenings at sun-down, he can always count on 10-15 minutes, no matter what (almost). Now that I'm retired, it's like it was when I was in college.
Here is his Mockumentary, and his artwork.
Talk about Rickeybird in Pet Talk!