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Feeding Time at the Zoo

This is what a typical Birdie Breakfast looks like around here. Going clockwise from the left, that’s Simon’s breakfast, Kazoo’s breakfast and Oboe’s breakfast.

By suppertime, Simon’s breakfast dish will be empty, Kazoo’s breakfast dish will be half-empty, and Oboe’s breakfast dish will be upside down on the floor of his house.

We usually try to make sure all the animals have eaten supper before we do, just so they’re not in the way while we’re trying to cook and eat. But last night we went to the antique show and got home later than usual, so the schedule (such as it is) got messed up. As a result, I ate my dinner with Oboe perched on my wrist. Every now and then he’d dash to the end of my finger and snag something from my plate – a sunflower sprout, a bit of lettuce, a piece of almond – and sometimes he’d fly it to the top of my head, where he’d eat it, oil and vinegar and all.

Rosie stands hopefully at the table while we eat dinner, studying each morsel as it travels from plate to mouth. She likes food a lot. We’re trying very hard not to feed her at the table, because we don’t want her to beg and drool. We fed Duncan from the table once, and he never forgot it. His whole food personality changed in that instant. Now he’s persistent, demanding and relentless during meals, and he thinks nothing of jumping on the table and helping himself to our food while we’re eating! He seems profoundly indifferent to our attempts to curb this behaviour. That’s why he’s only allowed to watch us eat from the other side of the dining room window now. (But I usually save him a little morsel for later, especially if it’s fish or chicken. He loves fish and chicken.)

Apparently birds love chicken too, but I’ve never offered any to my birds. I don’t like the idea of birds eating birds. All my birds are vegetarians.

Simon and Kazoo

Here’s a picture of Simon and Kazoo hanging out between meals on top of Simon’s house. The dynamics between the three birds are interesting. Simon and Oboe are friends. Simon and Kazoo are both afraid of each other, but I think they enjoy one another’s company from a distance.  Kazoo doesn’t like Oboe, but she doesn’t mind if he goes into her house when she’s not home and roots through her leftovers and takes a bath in her water dish.

I love having three birds. If they weren’t so messy, and if they didn’t take up so much space, and if I weren’t afraid of the vet bills, I’d have even more.



5 comments to Feeding Time at the Zoo

  • Mopar is a lot like Duncan with people food. Very pushy and won’t take no for answer. Tux begs, and can get pushy, but he knows the word no, and will back down when told.

    I’ve heard that giving birds meat is much like giving it to pet rats – you can do it, but it tends to make them more prone to biting… I don’t know if it’s true or not.

  • I enjoy reading about your birds but am sure I don’t have the patience needed to care for one properly. For the first time in 30 years, I am living in a pet free environment. It’s odd and the house feels a bit empty but we’ve promised ourselves not to add to the family until we’re ready. I still miss my last cat and see him everywhere. Funny thing is, he was not the friendliest cat I’ve owned. In fact, he was downright ornery and anti-social. Maybe that’s why I loved him.

  • I love our birds (our chickens eat a self chosen diet – 50% of which is bugs and slugs etc – what would yours choose in the wild?) and my favorite thing is watching how they interact with one another.

  • Lucy

    But then you would become the crazy bird lady if you had more! 😀

  • Murt

    I can’t see the pic of Simon and Kazoo!