Friday, June 5, 2009
Birdie Bath Time
By Linda Costello
Explore the diaries of daily life with large birds.
Molly and McMurphy, the green-winged macaw siblings, love to take a bath.
After a bath, Cupid, the Moluccan cockatoo, is called a “big pink chicken” because his feathers, that were white from powder, look pink!
In the kitchen, after having a good, drenching shower in the bathroom tub, my birds, Morgan, JJ, Renee and Boo will preen their feathers while drying, and watch home videos of themselves that I have on a tape just for their own entertainment. They'll be happily preening their wet feathers, but before long they'll be talking and singing right along with themselves on the tape. It becomes a big social event. I sometimes call it “Parrot Spa Day.”
Molly and McMurphy, the green-winged macaw siblings, are always ready to get on the shower perch for a good soaking. They are such a cute sight to see sitting on the shower perch, soaked to the skin! And there is nothing like a shower to bring out the beauty and shine in their feathers.
I think they truly love their showers and will often ask for one if I get lax. So, I'll carry them into the bathroom where I put them on the perch in the tub. While I spray them with the hand-held shower nozzle, they'll hold their wings out, twisting this way and that trying to catch every drop of water, all the while squealing, “Shower!” and “I like it!”
Morgan, one of my macaws, will not go into the tub shower, so for her I use a clean plant mister to spray her as she runs back and forth on her perch with her wings out.
And my conure, CooCoo, is easier showered in the kitchen sink with the spray attachment.
After his shower we call Cupid, our Moluccan cockatoo, our “big pink chicken” because his feathers, that were white from powder, look pink! (Showers help keep the powder produced by African greys, cockatoos and cockatiels to a minimum, which is good because it can be an allergen to some susceptible people and other birds.)
During the warmer months, I sometimes take the birds outside in their travel cages, spray them with the plant mister and let them dry in the sun. The sunshine is good for them, and they seem to like hearing all the different sounds and seeing sights that they don't usually get to see.
Never underestimate the “power of a shower.” Not only do the birds look fluffy with vibrantly-colored feathers, but it's good for their well being.
Check out my Bath-Time Montage:
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