Little did I know 30 years ago, when I got my first bird — my cockatiel, Elvis — that I would someday be celebrating BIRD TALK’s 30-year anniversary. It’s by mere coincidence that Elvis came into my life around the same time BIRD TALK was hatched, and I am thankful for both.
As Sally Blanchard writes in her new column, “Larger Than Life: Stories of Bird Divas, Drama Queens & Macho Strutters,” many of us had a cherished childhood pet bird that was the spark that made us seek out the feathered companions we share our lives with today. I am forever grateful for the 21 years Elvis and I shared and that he lived long enough to be my muse when I first joined BIRD TALK.
Bird ownership has changed a lot in the past 30 years. Companion birds have gone from “background” pets kept in cages a large part of the day to now being in the family dynamic. Our birds now join us at the dinner table and are our faithful sidekicks as we go about our day. Some of us cannot fathom watching our favorite TV shows without our birds by our side, or taking a family photo without our birds front and center.
A new year is just beginning. Why not let our birds inspire us? We could start with a healthier diet. I don’t know about you, but some of the fruits and veggies that make their way into my birds’ bowls don’t always make it onto my plate. Let’s agree to nibble more on the healthy foods we feed our birds. We could also benefit from trying some of the avian-inspired exercises showcased in “Avian Athletics” on Page 16. (For a good workout — and a good laugh — check out our comical, parrot-inspired exercise video here.) And just imagine if we followed the recommended sleep cycle for our birds: early to bed, early to rise. We would have more time in our day to spend with our flock.
For the full issue pick up the January 2012 issue of BIRD TALK at your local retailer or by purchasing a PDF download here.
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