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Linda Costello with two of her pet birds 

The Large Parrot Diary
About the author:

Linda Costello was a guest editor for BIRD TALK in 2003, and is a long-term subscriber to the magazine. She and her husband, Ray, live in Ohio and have shared their home with parrots for more than 22 years. Linda's blog is posted bi-weekly.

Thursday, August 26, 2010
Company Is For The Pet Birds ... Again!

Bright and early this morning my second round of summer visitors left for home. In June, my daughter Valerie was here for two weeks. This time it was my brother and sister-in-law, Danny and Linda, who came to visit. View Blog>>

Thursday, July 29, 2010
A Day At The Avian Vet

It’s great to have bird friends. My friend Tina joined me for a trip to the vet, and we loaded the carriers with my African grey, Muggsy, blue-and- gold macaw, JJ, and my Moluccan cockatoo, Cupid, and we were off! View Blog>>

Thursday, July 22, 2010
Company Is For The Pet Birds!

Valerie is my one child (out of three) that seems to have inherited my love for my parrots. Don't get me wrong — the other two like them but they are not as involved with them as Valerie is. She calls regularly from Florida to talk to them (and me of course!) here in Ohio. She tends to call about the same time of day each time and the birds somehow sense when it is her calling. I walk around to each bird, holding up the cordless or cell phone for them so they can hear and talk to her. View Blog>>

Thursday, July 1, 2010
My Special Angel, African Grey Muggsy

I know you're not supposed to have favorites when it comes to your kids, and I guess it should also be the same rule for your feathered kids. I do love all my birds dearly but, to be honest, one little African grey parrot, Muggsy, holds a special place in my heart! View Blog>>

Thursday, June 10, 2010
Could It Happen To You?

We happily spend days taking care of, playing with, buying toys and cooking for our beloved parrots. Today, I am going to focus this blog on the cooking.  View Blog>> 

Thursday, May 27, 2010
Getting Ready For Some Summertime Fun

We're having a wave of the first warm weather for this coming summer season. I can't wait to fix up the new deck for us! View Blog>> 

Thursday, May 13, 2010
Sudden Death

My beautiful African grey Mitch is gone! He died on April 7, 2010, but I held back talking about it because I find it so hard to believe. View Blog>> 

Thursday, April 22, 2010
What A Fine Mess I've Gotten Into

With 14 pet parrots, cleaning, for me, is a 24-hour-a-day necessity. Over the years, I've learned how to work in little ways throughout each day to keep up with the mess before it gets out of hand. View Blog>> 

Thursday, April 8, 2010
Kids And Parrots

Austin, my grandson, turned 4 in March. Before he could even walk or talk he was fascinated by my parrots. He would laugh when my African grey parrot, Muggsy, said “Hello” to him; when it is time to go home, Muggsy, flaps her wings up and down as if waving while saying, "Bye, bye!" View Blog>> 

Thursday, March 25, 2010
Wrapped Around Their Talons

I have conversations with my birds all the time. I've lived with them since 1987 and I guess I take it for granted that I can talk to them like I would a child and that they will understand and even answer me. View Blog>> 

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

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. View Blog>> 

Thursday, February 25, 2010
Parrots Have Taken Over

Our pet birds have taken over our home, but I'm not complaining. It does, however, require a lot of effort to keep things looking somewhat neat! I constantly rearrange cages and furniture to try and come up with the perfect setup. With as many pet birds as we have, it's a challenge because their play areas can take up a lot of room. View Blog>> 

Thursday, February 11, 2010
Cupid, My Moluccan Cockatoo

Since this is February I will write about my parrot Cupid! Everybody knows about that boy named Cupid, armed with a bow and arrows, and piercing hearts to make people fall in love. He is known as a mischievous, winged child. My Cupid is a Moluccan cockatoo parrot with big, dark eyes that can pierce your heart and make you fall in love with him. View Blog>> 

Thursday, January 21, 2010
The Red Hat Ladies

A few years ago, a friend asked me to join her Red Hat group. We get together for dinner, a play or sometimes we meet at a member's house for some fun and games. After hearing many stories about the antics of my parrots, the ladies were curious to meet them. View Blog>> 

Thursday, January 7, 2010
New Year Full of Dreams For The Birds!

I love being on all my parrot-related e-mail lists. I get many ideas for my blogs by reading what is talked about on them. View Blog>> 

Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Christmas Time With My Birds

I always include the birds in our Christmas festivities. They get a special present of their own to open. To be safe I use paper towels as wrapping paper since traditional Christmas wrap with its glitter and potentially toxic ink could pose a health risk. View Blog>> 

Thursday, December 10, 2009
Silly & Serious Things Parrots Say & Do

On one of the e-mail bird lists I'm on, they were talking about things that their parrots say, which got me to thinking about some of the serious and silly things my own pet birds come up with ...View Blog>> 

Monday, November 30, 2009
Keeping Phinny's Trust

I heard Phinny yell like African greys sometimes do when they are playing and exuberantly attacking their toys. I wasn't concerned at first, but I decided to check it out to be sure everything was alright. View Blog>> 

Monday, November 23, 2009

Time to get ready for the Thanksgiving feast! Is your bird a turkey like mine? My African grey, Muggsy, is a ham ... Err, I mean turkey, who doesn't mind lying on her back. View Blog>> 

Thursday, November 12, 2009
Bittersweet Re-Homing

I have been speaking with the lady who has around 11 birds. Health and financial issues are making it difficult for her to care for so many parrots. She is also going through a divorce at 60 years old and has no one to help her. So, my friend Kay, Tina and I went to visit to see some of the birds that need re-homing. View Blog>> 

Thursday, October 15, 2009
Halloween Is Almost Upon Us

We don't get a lot of trick-or-treaters here where we live. Although we live in a town, we have a great, out-of-the-way location with a wooded area in the back that is off the beaten track, and I like it this way! View Blog>> 

Monday, September 28, 2009
Tiki & Spike

Tiki is an umbrella cockatoo. She makes me laugh when she struts her stuff, crest standing straight up, looking as if she is going to burst forth with the loudest ear-shattering scream you've ever heard ... only to hear this little peep sound instead. View Blog>> 

Monday, September 14, 2009
Time For Grooming?

A Peticure could be the answer! Have you ever tried to use the Peti Paws or Peticure, a new tool for grooming pets’ toenails? View Blog>> 

Friday, August 28, 2009
What Will Happen to My Parrots?

There are always parrots that need to be rehomed for many reasons. I have taken in birds myself, some because the owners were ill or deceased, and others because the owners just didn't want them anymore or they were afraid of being bitten by them. View Blog>> 

Monday, August 3, 2009
Summer's Almost Gone!

It's August already! I can't believe summer is almost over. I always plan on letting my birds outside to enjoy the warm weather and sunshine more often than they actually do. View Blog>> 

Monday, July 13, 2009
Inevitable Vet Trips!

Taking my birds to the vet can get pretty expensive, but it is a necessity. I always tell people that when you have a flock, the cost can become mind boggling! The more birds you have, the more likely an unexpected vet trip will be necessary. View Blog>> 

Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Decorating Bird Style

My birds need plenty of room in for their cages, playstands, boings, swings and more. After all they do need their play time, not to mention exercise! View Blog>> 

Friday, June 5, 2009
Birdie Bath Time

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. View Blog>> 

Friday, May 22, 2009
Amazing African Greys 

My African greys, Muggsy, Mitch and Phinny, are so smart, fun and entertaining. Muggsy will hang upside down from my fingers like a crazy gray bat, play dead or she’ll perform her special “Exotic Drink” trick for anyone who will watch. View Blog>> 

Friday, May 8, 2009
Birds Know What They’re Saying 

My birds never cease to amaze me. When I talk to them, they look me in the eye as they cock their head knowingly. In my experience, it’s the African grey parrots and macaws who seem so able to communicate on a more mutual level. View Blog>>

Friday, April 24, 2009
We're Back Home 

We got back from our vacation on April 12, and we had a good time. All went great at home with the birds. My friends took good care of them and reassured me with phone calls that all was going well. Tina, one of my birdsitters, sent me a picture of her holding Phinny, one of my African greys. View Blog>>

Friday, April 10, 2009
Thoughts Of Parrots

By the time you read this, I should be back from my vacation. I’m wondering how many of you are like me; who find it really hard to leave your birds in someone else’s care and worry that no one else can take care of them the way I do. View Blog>>

Friday, March 27, 2009
Is A Vacation Possible?

There's no doubt my birds can be loud, but their squawking usually doesn't go on for too long. And yes, they bite on occasion. But I've learned to read their body language, which helps me avoid being bitten. The noise doesn't bother me much, but I'm sure people with little bird experience find it hard sharing my feelings for pets that sometimes have been said to resemble a Tyrannosaurus Rex! View Blog>>

Tuesday, March 17, 2009
The Changes You Make For The Birds!

One of the things I miss reading in BIRD TALK are the personal parrot owner stories. Reading them gave me insight into how other people live with their birds. I think people get too caught up in worrying about misinformation being printed or the fact that the stories weren't written by professionals. View Blog>>

Friday, February 27, 2009
Wintertime Doldrums

We’ve had freezing rain and the roads are all closed. I'm so glad I don't have to go out for anything. Here in Ohio, we have had our share of snowfall, but the birds play happily on their stands and playgyms, listening to tropical music CDs, oblivious to the cold outside. View Blog>>

Friday, February 13, 2009
Destined To Own Birds?

After my mother passed away, I was sorting through her things, and I came across a box of my grandmother's old diaries. In an entry dated March, 1964, she wrote that her mother's (my great grandmother's) parakeet (budgie) had died at 12 years old. View Blog>>

Friday, January 30, 2009
Bird Bites & Body Language

One of the best ways to have a good relationship with your bird is to pay attention to its body language. The one thing you can predict about owning birds is that at some point you will get bitten. Having lived with parrots for over 22 years, I used to say I was never bitten too badly. But I can't say that anymore! View Blog>>

Friday, January 16, 2009
Good Vets and Supportive Bird Friends

I found a great vet for my birds several years ago. The 4 1/2 hour round trip is worth it. My friend Tina and I always make the trip to the vet together. That way, we are there to give each other support along the way if we panic about our sick or injured bird. View Blog>>

Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Large Parrot Diaries Genesis

Aside from my blue-crowned conure, CooCoo; my blue-fronted Amazon, Radar; two African greys, Muggsy and Mitch; and the third grey that I just adopted in October, Phinneas; our flock includes Tiki, an umbrella cockatoo; a lesser sulphur-crested cockatoo, Spike; and a Moluccan cockatoo, Cupid. View Blog>>

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