February 5, 2012

Happy hatch-day!

Let me tell you about this crazy parrot of mine. Meeko is a Timneh African grey parrot and today he turns 11 years old. There are two types of African greys - the Timnehs and the Congos. Congos are a lot more common in the pet trade with those beautiful bright red tails (and a few other differences). You might have heard of Einstein or Alex showing off their abilities to mimic, they are both Congos. If you search for them on Youtube prepare to be impressed.
Congo African Grey
Timneh African Grey
When I was 13 my awesome parents agreed to let me get a bigger parrot after years of having lovebirds and small conures. So probably the best choice I made in the 8th grade was to sell my Beanie Baby collection on Ebay and get most of the money to buy Meeko. I first met my little guy before he even had any feathers. Cutest naked-chicken ever. My mom would take me on the hour drive to visit him every few weeks until he was old enough to take home. This is a picture of a baby Timneh grey (not Meeko though). Isn't it so cute!

As I'm sure you can imagine, a lot has happened between bringing Meeko home the summer before I started high school and now. He has been through it all with me from my first boyfriend to my first apartment to attacking loving my husband to comforting my baby... "You're all right, Bea. You're all right."

He loves to whistle and mimics tunes we whistle (like Indiana Jones) 
and makes some of his own up, too.
He is a total pig. He knows when we are eating something (sees us or hears crinkling wrappers) and immediately wants out and does some nice loud beeping to let us know. (Bad bird!)
I've been trying to teach him The Carpenters song "Close to you" for years, but he will only say 
"Why dooo...." and then whistles the rest.
He loves to order the dogs around...
 "Sit, Charlie!" "Roy, go lay down!" "Get the ball, Roy!"
When we talk on the phone or are deep in conversation, Meeko likes to chime in with 
"Uh huh"s, "Ok"s, and then the final "Ok, bye. Beep!"
He says tons of other things, but the newest words he's picked up are "Care bears" and "Alright!!"
When he sees certain people he says 'their words' they have taught him however long ago. 
So when he sees my grandpa about once a year he starts saying 
"Grandpa" in this silly parrot voice my grandpa taught him years ago. 
Or when we go to my parents' house he says the things he learned when we lived there, 
like "Is Kelsey home?" and "Kelseyyyyy!" in my dad's voice.

I know this is blury, but I am so proud of Meeko's newfound flying skills. I had a bit of a change of heart with keeping parrots as pets last year and decided it was time for Meeko to get in touch with his inner bird after all these years of acting like a human. He is so happy when he flies, he puffs up his chest and is like, "Yeah, that's right, I can fly." It is a beautiful thing.

Happy birthday my little man!


  1. This blog is sincere from your heart. That is one lucky chicken, I mean bird :)

  2. ok this is so cute! I love the phone conversations. How funny!