I had so many clients in the last couple of weeks (YAY!) that I got a bit overwhelmed with the rest of my world like blogging. So, here are a few things that happened during that time at Pippin and Clementine’s (and The Budgies, of course).
I sat with Clementine on my knee at the kitchen table while he groomed himself happily and I noticed that Pippin had finished his peanut butter on rawhide (favorite!) and was kind of sadly sitting by himself. As he gazed forlornly in the distance, I picked up Clem and went into the living room and sat down next to him and gave him belly rubs. He was in belly rub heaven! He rolled around in bliss while Clementine eyeballed him. Pip’s head was near my feet where Clem was too and Pippin started sniffing him. Clementine puffed up his feathers, opened his mouth in a hiss and tried to fend off the affront. Pippin was so happy with the belly rubs that he licked Clementine on the face!!! Clementine did NOT know what to do with himself. He puffed out more, stomped back and forth and tried to shake the spit off of his face. I was hysterical! I thought it was one of the funniest, greatest things I’d ever witnessed. And what was even more interesting was that instead of running up my legs and hopping up my arm and onto my shoulder to the utmost safety point, he remained at my feet. He continued to stomp back and forth and if Pippin moved to quickly or came to close, he’d go into his stance, but he remained there, watching and waiting for his next move.
I’d like to point out that yes, that is bird poop on my leg. One thing you get used to when working with birds is that they poop on you all the time. Ah, the hazards of working with these awesome little avian creatures.
Next up, one of the budgies is yellow and is one of the newer pair. The first pair was bonded and the second were just acquired at the same time. While his (or her) counterpart has adapted to the other two and fit right in with the bickering, the all yellow one tends to be a loner. I’ll often find him in Clementine’s cage during the day, hanging out and eating his food. I’ve never really seen him on top of the cage with the others, although I have had the unfortunate experience of trying to get him back in the cage once. He’s just as hard to get ahold of as the rest of them. So, again, I was sitting at the kitchen table while Clementine groomed himself on my knee. He likes to hop down from the table and take up residence, while he’s not busy flinging things off of the table, another favorite past time.
I looked over at the cages and it was nap time. Yes, they do nap and it’s really funny to watch them fall asleep because they do the same thing that a child does with the eyes open and slowly shut and OPEN and slowly shut and open and slowly shut and closed. Clementine falls asleep on me sometimes and I find it to be an outstanding experience that he trusts me enough to do it and super cute to watch up close. But back to yellow budgie. So he’s asleep and he’s upright, like most birds are, and he’s got budgies on all sides (one of whom is outside of the cage right across from him on a perch but is awake), and I notice that his two feet are gripped on the cage and that he’s not leaning up against anything and is practically hanging backwards, meaning that his body is heading toward prone, and he’s ASLEEP! I grab my camera and get closer and while his body doesn’t move from the position, he’s awake due to the click of the camera. So, here’s a few shots of him, the first closer to sleep, the second definitely not, and please keep in mind that he’s not touching the perch that you see behind him. Birds. Weirdos.
A bit more on the budgies:
As I’ve mentioned, I have a somewhat tormented relationship with The Budgies. Last week, while Clementine showed continuous support with his unparalleled affection, I watched the budgies as I often do. They’d spent the evening alternating between pleasant chirps and flat out screams. They ran around and around the top of the cage disagreeing over who knows what. At one point, one of them sat in the snack plate, beat it’s wings and squawked at the one who’d pissed it off. Food and feathers flung themselves in the air and they continued their persistent struggle. Sometimes they just full on chased each other around yelling.Very complex little creatures.
It was time to leave and three out of four budgies were still bickering on top of the cage. Were I my client, I would have just grabbed them up in my hand and plopped them back in their cage. I am not she. I have gone as far as to seek out a step ladder to gain access to their level. It doesn’t help. Once I reach a hand in their direction, they dart off. Another attempt leads the budgie to deftly shoot down the side of the cage and then over out of the reach. No matter what angle I attempt, they are masters at knowing the best way to allude me. And all of it is accompanied by shouts of defiance. They’re like little protesters at a rally, shaking their fists at my giant hand, growing hoarse yelling slogans about oppression. And they are spectacular at it, winning every time. So, gone are the days where I flail around on my hands and knees trying to coax a rogue lost one out from below the giant wardrobe that acts as a pantry. I am done going back and forth and back and forth and BACK AND FORTH attempting to grab one. Now I just repeat the mantra and remember that they have a permanent door open on their cage and that even though there is a sheet blocking it at night, they know where their food is and happily the two shall meet.