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Siren's Call

By Melissa Kauffman

Melissa Kauffman explains her theory that Deacon is a Siren 
Editorial Director Melissa Kauffman.

During a recent photo shoot at our offices, Associate Editor Jessica Pineda had asked me to bring in Deacon, my blue-headed Pionus parrot. By the end of the day, he had bitten two of my co-workers. Not just any old co-workers, but the ones who have kept parrots. In other words, the two that should have known better. (All of our pet enthusiastic non-bird owning editorial co-workers do not touch our birds. We have taught them to not touch a strange bird.)

Both co-workers said Deacon seemed so sweet and he kept talking to them and he really seemed like he wanted a head scratch. I said, "He was trying to lure you in. And you fell for it." You see, I believe that Deacon is really a Siren.

Sirens are mythical creatures in Greek literature. They have the body of a bird and the head of a beautiful woman. Their lovely voices enticed sailors to the Siren's small island surrounded by rocks. The ships would crash on the rocks, killing the sailors. This describes Deacon (except for the female part).

With me, Deacon is sweet and seems thoughtful. He is quiet and lets out a sharp, "Eh," grunt sound when you do something he doesn't like. The first time I took him to my avian-only vet, however, Deacon suddenly became another bird. I put his cage on the receptionist desk and he began to strut, look at the vet tech and bat his eyes. He said, "Helloooo." She was immediately entranced and put a finger in his cage to give him a head scratch. He bit her. And then he laughed. He did the same thing to my co-workers.

I have certainly learned a lot this past year about Pionus and about Deacon. We have a Pionus article on page 25. It was funny, because I, too, think that the Pionus are related to Amazons. They are the ultimate Sirens.

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