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Living with Orinoco and Urk

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by Karen Chudley

Karen keeps a mixed collection of companion parrots and seems to have a special affinity and understanding of each and every one of them. Here she helps Orinoco, who she rescued from a pet shop, tell his story…

Hello, my name is Orinoco and I am a male Orange-winged Amazon parrot. I will be three this year and I’m still a big kid at heart. I spent the first year of my life stuck in a cage in a pet shop, with no toys and nothing but a big dish of parrot mix, stuffed with sunflower seed, to keep me occupied. Not surprisingly I put on weight and my feathers got a bit scruffy but to my credit I never plucked them out.

One day, because I had nothing to play with, I began improvising and made a toy out of one of the door catches. I managed to let myself out of my boring prison, but after that they put padlocks on all the doors and that was the end of that bit of fun. In the end I became very territorial about my cage as it was the only place I felt safe.

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