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It didn't take long before I had bird cages all over the place--moderation is NOT my name. At one point I had 21 birds plus I was taking care of an African Gray bird whose owner was in the hospital. There was Andi, Jill's bird, who was a lot of fun. If I remember correctly she also let me take care of her birds for a short period of time when she and her mother went on a cruise. At one point she was having breathing problems caused by the 'down', also called feather dust, that budgies and tiels give off. I would eventually have something similar but what happened to me was that along with not having birds that have down I couldn't have a larger bird due to the possibility of a bite and my thin blood which could get out of control and wind up with major problems .

Now comes the hard part--unless my stalkers who collect everything I post want to help!--Jill doesn't remember, Allen thinks it is more like 2011 and I know I wrote a blog about it on a few of my blog web sites but I never have any luck trying to find a particular blog--I did briefly look through my diary for that period of time but since I was blogging I basically just wrote 1 or 2 lines--I won't be able to give any specific dates except to tell you what happened. THANKS TO MARY, who did the research, it seems we were all wrong--I gave the birds away about a month after I spent a week in the hospital--and I don't know what for!! Now I have to look that up!!!

My NET, heart and pulmonary doctors all told me the same thing--that due to my C.O.P.D., my valve replacement operation, my arterial fibrillation and a few other health issues I would have to get rid of my birds! My immediate answer was a lour "No!" It was my pulmonary doc who calmed me down and explained step by step why I had to, showing me, graphically what would happen if I didn't.

My first (horrid) thought was just to let them loose and I knew that would be the wrong thing to do. I went to Clive's shop and spoke to him and he said he was sorry but he had too many of each right now. I spoke to a few people who I thought would be good bird owners and offered them everything from the cage to the toys to the food completely free but no one wanted one let alone all of them. I finally put an 'ad' on Craig's list specifying I did not want to give them to anyone who hadn't had birds before and would in fact be better if they had a bird, or birds, now. It took awhile, a few interviews, a few 'home inspections' and finally I feel I found good homes for all of them.

It's been a couple or 3 years now and every time I walk into the apartment I look for them. It took quite awhile for me to stop getting up at 10 PM to get their snacks and I have kept one cage just in case the doctors say it is okay to get a bird and I do ask them each time!!! I miss them, and, yes, even their poop!

When I hear people are interested in getting a pet I immediately start talking about birds. They are very easy to take care of, especially tiels and budgies and though I have never had a conure because of the bite factor--I didn't have any problems with Jill's bird Andi--but Jill has three of them and they are not giving her any breathing problems.

I still have 'my' wild parrots that come by around 5-6 PM and socialize in the trees in front and in the back of my building--yes they are loud but striking with their green and red coloring. It is aginst the rules to feed the wild birds around here and some day someone will find that renegade who feeds the doves, puts food bits near the bluebird's nests and even throws some bird seed on the back lawn!!

In a short span of time--6-7 years--I had Butch, Sky, Loner, Cassie, Lola, Spitfire and the 21 finches--I am glad I took so many pictures of them!

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