Aug 29, 2001

Cleo came home today. Her flight was late, arriving at 9:10 p.m. instead of 8:55 p.m. We arrived at the airport in plenty of time to pick her up. We decided to wait in the car rather than wait in the receiving area with its one chair, freezing air-conditioned environment, and equally freezing personality of the attendant behind the counter. As the time came for us to pick her up we went back to the office. Before opening the door we knew she had arrived. Her call, with a tone that clearly related "I want out of this cage" could be heard through the door. We entered and looked into her carrier. Was she cowering in the back after having left Boca Ratan Florida at 3:00 p.m. (1:00 p.m. Arizona time), and having a 3 hour layover in Houston? Not at all. There she was clinging to the front of the carrier just bursting with energy. I guess she didn't realize it was Midnight in Florida. I offered her a grape and she immediately took it and began chowing down. How adorable she was.

We arrived home and prepared to do as Gloria had instructed. We were to place her carrier on the floor, open the door, and let her choose to come out. Well, there was no waiting. She clung to the door, climbed to the top of the cage and stepped up immediately on my offered finger. Gloria, had told me to just cuddle her a little and then put her to bed. Cleo was not in for cuddling, she wanted to play, play, and play some more. She was introduced to everyone in her new family, John, Kevin, Stephanie, and me. She played with several foot toys. She was a little dynamo. I finally had to call it a night for her and put her in her cage.

As I crawled in bed that night with John I said something to the affect that I would be worrying about her all night. He replied telling me that he had expected I would sleep on the couch. I was down on the couch in short order. And, although Cleo was quiet the whole night I discovered that Chance roams the house all night long. I got very little sleep with Chance on patrol all night.

July 17, 2002

Cleo's first flight: The following is a copy of the post I sent to the Caique Mailing List to share in my delight at Cleo's first flight.

Cleo flew 18 feet the other day!!

I want to share the following story of Cleo's flight because I am so thrilled she flew, and because it has given me a little insight into what I think happens with birds that fly away (not saying I'm right... just my theory *smile*).
Cleo has one flight feather to go on each wing before she has all her flight feathers in. The other day we had a storm coming in and wind blew through the dog door rustling the newspaper that is under her play-stand (cloths drying rack). She startled and flew about 18 feet to where I was standing. I saw her coming in on a level flight and just before she reached me she angled up to land on my arm. I was thrilled that she had been able to do that.

The interesting thing is that she has had the feathers for some time now. But the farthest she has gone is about 3-4 feet. She would jump/fly from the play stand to the back of my husband's chair. If the chair was farther than 3-4 feet she would not even attempt it. She would make like she wanted to, but she would not go for it. Also, once on the chair she never went back to the play-stand. I figured it was because she preferred to stay on the chair. I think I was wrong.

Later in the day after the spooking incident Cleo jumped/flew down to the back of John's chair, then she jumped/few back up to the stand. She did this 4 times in a row. I swear she was saying "Look MOM!!! I can get lift!"

And her crowning achievement… yesterday she flew straight up (as in elevator straight up) from the seat of a chair onto the top of my desk. The chair was right up against the desk and she just elevated!

I feel that she has discovered something that she did not know she could do, or was too afraid to do, before making her first flight.

I am teaching her to come to me when called. But she still won't fly more than about 4 feet. If I get farther away than that she wants to come to me (er, the apple), but after agonizing over the take off she finally just gives up and doesn't attempt it. Even though she made the 18 foot flight wonderfully.

Having seen her flighted, and not flighted I have my own theory on birds flying away and not coming back. Cleo, not flighted, was afraid to go any further than she could hop. I'm thinking that when the birds that are clipped do get a gust of wind that allows them to go up instead of straight down, I think they are 1) startled by the fact that they are in the air and flying, 2) once they land I think they may be afraid to try to take off again for fear of falling as they have always done in the past.

I know it is a controversial issue, and I am not saying I am right in allowing Cleo her wings and anyone else is wrong… I just wanted to share with you Cleo's coming of confidence, and what I gleaned from it. I am very proud of her, and it is so neat seeing her confidence increase.



More to Come...

Cleo has been in our family for almost a year now and I have a lot of fun pictures and stories to share. I hope to have them up within the next month (August 2002), so please visit again.


Web Cleo's Corner

Disclaimer: I am sure that anyone who takes the time to read my comments on this site would be aware that I have put this website together with the intent of sharing my joy of living my life with Cleo and to enable those wishing to find information on parrot care to have an easier time of finding info than I did when I was searching when Cleo first came into my life. This site is put forth with the best of intentions, but nonetheless I feel it is necessary to post a disclaimer. So here goes...
The owner of Cleo's Corner is not a veterinarian or breeder and has no specialized training in parrot care. Information contained on Cleo's Corner is not intended to replace diagnosis or treatment from a qualified avian veterinarian. Visitors are encouraged to consult with qualified health care practitioners for diagnosis and treatments. The owner and contributors of Cleo's Corner do not assume any legal responsibility for the use or misuse of any information contained within. The owner of Cleo's Corner does not necessarily endorse services or products mentioned on the site. Recommendation for toys, products, techniques, or treatments are the responsibility of the user and at the user's discretion.
No one associated with this website has any liability to any person or entity with respect to loss or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly by advice / information provided to him or her.