Tuesday, August 13, 2019
My recently-adopted canary has a new name and a bigger, brighter cage. I’m calling her Sparkle to match her tiny cuteness. She’s very small and barely a handful, unlike my previous and current birds. Sparkle tries to resist being caught and held. She might have originated from a quantity breeder who raised lots of birds and provided minimal physical contact–just enough to describe birds as having been hand-fed and handled. For a bird to feel really comfortable while resting in a hand or perched on a finger, it needs from infancy lots of gentle captures and loving handling.
Sparkle and I have work ahead as I hope to make her comfortable with the handling part. Right now it’s a slippery slope, for if she gets loose from my hands and flies toward my vaulted ceilings, catching her would be iffy and difficult. If that should happened, my best bet would be to set her cage somewhere visible with its door open, and hope she enters for food and comfort.
There’s also my cat, Maxwell. His watching eyes glitter as Sparkle flits in her cage. When Max is inside, she’s safely in another room. Usually in daylight hours, Max is outside and Sparkle can enjoy the company of my other birds–much bigger–a Cockatoo and a former racing pigeon. In large heavy cages, they’re unavailable to Maxwell. But Sparkle’s smaller and lightweight cage is less challenging.
In the beginning, Sparkle’s smallness surprised me. My littlest birds had been Quaker Parrots and a Cockatiel, all at least twice her size and much easier to hold. Sparkle is little enough to slip from between too-open fingers, and of course, she shouldn’t be gripped tightly. So, both of us are learning, about each other and how to live together.
Sparkle may be a tiny canary but all birds have some smarts. Maybe she can learn some new behaviors and expand her life experiences.
Dear Friends: Even the seemingly most-simple pets are big obligations. Diana