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Thursday, March 11, 2010
Goodbye Winter – Hello Spring!

By Linda Costello
Explore the diaries of daily life with large birds.

blue-and-gold macaw
Courtesy Linda Costello
JJ, a blue-and-gold macaw, looks out the window at the snow.

green-winged macaw
Courtesy Linda Costello
McMurphy, a green-winged macaw, is cozy and warm as it snows outside.

Recently, I awoke at 5 a.m. to blood-curdling screams from the bird room. It's never happened in all the years I have had birds and it sure got my adrenaline going! Of course I had to wake my husband to come downstairs to see if a burglar had broken in to the house.

I ran to calm my blue-and-gold macaw, Morgan, who sees herself as the sentinel bird in our flock. Believe me, she takes that position seriously. The other birds, who I'm sure were probably just as startled as I was, also needed some calming and reassurance that all was well. After a thorough check of the house, Ray and I agreed that one of the giant icicles hanging from the rain gutter must have finally let loose at this most inconvenient hour.

This has been the worst winter by far in quite some time. Snowstorm after snowstorm dumps snow and frigid weather on us. So much snow has piled up on the roof that when the sun shines and warms things up a little the melting snow runs down and forms humongous icicles that hang from the gutters of almost every building in town. It creates a beautiful, but potentially dangerous, situation.

We have been lucky so far but many homes around us have lost power for hours and sometimes days. Every winter I feel like I'm walking on thin ice (pun intended), hoping to get through the cold season without loosing power. We have on occasion, and I always worry about how we'd be able to keep the birds warm if it were off for an extended period of time. This year, to protect our parrots from power outages, we bought a generator. It is such a relief not to worry about the power anymore.
 
I hope the snowstorm that has started tonight is the last of it all. After all, it's almost March and it will be by the time you read this. I can't wait for spring!
 
What are some things you've done to make sure your birds stay warm this winter? Share your comments below.

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Goodbye Winter – Hello Spring!

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Reader Comments
Awesome story! I hope that the birds are alright and that it's Spring!
Mike, Columbia, TN
Posted: 3/21/2010 5:49:43 PM
In January, the heat went out in the little house we rented. We took our blue and gold macaw, Merlin, to my fiance's parents house until it was fixed. When we got back, the heat still wasn't sufficient... so we moved. :-) Oh, the things we do for our birds!
Emma, Belton, MO
Posted: 3/17/2010 3:50:54 PM
Thank you for your concern. That is how we all learn from each other. I should have mentioned that fact in my Blog as there have been deaths from generators being set too close to windows in my area this winter too. Anyone using a generator should be sure to sit it far away from any windows to be sure the fumes don't get into the house.
Thank you for your comment.
Linda, Toronto, OH
Posted: 3/17/2010 8:27:54 AM
Just a quick note on that generator be VERY careful not to run it near any windows which contain birds. I know The idea is to keep them warm but make sure the fumes have NO way of leaching back into the house...If theres a draft...fumes can get in. People have died from this here in Florids and birds are sooo much more suseptible. Thanks for listening
Mary Ann, Ft Lauderdale, FL
Posted: 3/16/2010 10:44:56 PM
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