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Dear Parrots magazine,

What a fright!

I read with great interest John Hayward’s Bird Alert each month and am always frightful of people losing their birds. Our birds become part of our lives and losing one, must be like having an arm cut off.

After I lost my husband three years ago, Bertie, Blue-headed Pionus, as I call him, has become my whole life and I just cannot imagine what I would do if he escaped. Not that I think he would want to leave me, but with the great outdoors in sight, you never know.

Recently, I had the fright of my life when Bertie got out. It was just one of those things that happen so quickly and in a flash. It was when we had a very cold snap and snow was around that I opened the back patio door to look at the snow. But like in so many cases, I forgot Bertie was on my back. He tends to hang on to my blouse collar at the back of my neck, so was out of sight. When he sits on my shoulder, I can see him out of the corner of my eye, and know he’s there. But this time, the sight of the snow tempted me.

But I suppose luck was with me as when he flew out and landed in the snow half way down the garden. I just panicked and ran out to him. He looked quite frightened, but nothing like I was! He was panting as though it was a great exertion for him and seemed that this was as far as he could get before getting his breath back. At that point I picked him up and carefully walked back to the house, but what a fright!

Jan Osborne - by email




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