Parrot Poetry

This came from the book Charlie's World, by Audrey Ronning Topping, that I recently purchased and read, about a Cockatoo named Charlie.

Epitaph to a Parrot

For thirty years he talked in feathered pride
For thirty years he talked before he died.
You say that parrots do not really know
The meaning of the words they speak? Just so,
I grant you that you may be right - but then,
Do men?
By Theodore Stephanides

cockatoos on a line

She was not quite what you would call refined. She was not quite what you would call unrefined. She was the kind of person that keeps a parrot.

~Mark Twain

cockatoos on a line

Food Bowl Etiquette

From The Pet Bird Report List

Author Unknown

The Foot Strainer

Place one foot on the side of the food bowl, using the other foot as a utensil. Grab a footfull of food and lift. Smaller seeds and pieces of food will fall to the floor, making a funny noise. Eat the one or two pieces which remain in the foot. Repeat until the bowl is empty.

The Dainty Selector

Approach the fresh dish of food. Daintily select pieces of food and gently drop to the floor of the cage until only a few desired pieces of food remain in the bowl. Proceed to eat. When done, call for more food.

The Dieter

One at a time, hold each piece of fruit, veggie or pasta in the foot. Take one bite and drop the remainder on the floor. This ensures that there will be room for treats and other delicacies later.

The Dried Fruit Gourmet

Choose pieces of dried fruit. Carefully place them in the water bowl. Return later, after they have plumped up. Then remove from the bowl, taste and drop on the floor.

The Shoveler

Approach a full dish of food. Bury the beak in the bowl and with a quick snap of the neck, sweep the food sideways out of the dish. Use short quick strokes to cover most of the cage bottom with pretty patterns of food. If feeling energetic, shovel harder to decorate the walls and floor outside of the cage. This method helps convince the pet owner that a different kind of food is preferred.

The 20 foot Fling

Dip the foot in a food dish and grab a large footfull of goodies. Close the foot into a ball around the items, raise the foot and throw as far as possible. This technique not only gets to the walls and floors, but reaches much of the furniture as well.

The Grate Houdini

From time to time drop morsels of favorite foods on the cage floor. Let them remain there while they age to the proper potency. When ready, climb down to the cage floor and sample the delicacies. Many pet owners have placed grates in the bottom of the cage. To thwart this maneuver, just stretch a leg through the grate to get at the prize. Most birds have legs long enough to reach the tray below the grate. If the owner changes the cage papers daily, begin dropping pieces of food just after the change so that the food has at least a few hours to ripen.

The Butter or Sauce Scraper

This maneuver is to foil the human who coats a piece of undesirable food with butter, sauce or something else that birds really love. Just hold the piece of food in the foot and use the beak to skim off the good tasting part, leaving the unwanted portion untouched.

Pack a Lunch

Tuck seeds, pellets or other choice items among the feathers and under the wings. It messes up the human's measurements of how much is eaten and puzzles them when they give you a shower.

Water Sports

The Artist

For birds with an artistic flair and a good sense of color. Break off a piece of dyed wood from a favorite toy and place in the water dish. From time to time, return to the dish and mix. When the water has turned a satisfactory color, call for the pet owner to admire the creation and replace the water. Begin a new artistic work.

The Dunker

Carefully select a choice piece of food from the food dish. Items like pellets, cheerios or birdie bread are best. Dip in the water bowl until thoroughly soaked. Sample the moist delicacy and decide that it doesn't taste as good as expected. Leave the item in the water bowl and start complaining about the messy water.

The Water Bottle Trick

For those birds lucky enough to have a water bottle. Select the proper size seed and wedge it into the water bottle tip. This keeps the water bottle mechanism open and creates a nice waterfall effect. Experienced birds can also use the beak or a toe to achieve the same effect.

Eating at the Dinner Table

The Plate Stomp

Explore the various foods available on the table, before making a selection. Just approach each bowl or plate and walk through it, making sure to pass through each item on the plate. Foods with sauces and dressings are especially great. They stick to the feet and allow the flavors to mix with other food items. The messy feet also discourage the pet owner from picking a bird up from the table.

The Shoulder Trick

Select a piece of food which has a sauce (such as pasta) or a juicy item (such as a piece of tomato). Holding the food in the beak, as fast as possible climb up the arm of a human to the shoulder. Proceed to eat the messy food, dropping sauce or juice on the human's clothes. When done, drop the remainder and wipe the beak on a still clean portion of the item of clothing. A true expert bird can perfect the 'Squeegee Trick'. Hold a piece of pasta with sauce in the foot and bite off the end. Pull the pasta through the foot to get another bit, while at the same time forcing the sauce to come off on the foot. Place this foot on the human's shoulder when it has become sufficiently covered with sauce. Climb down the arm to get another piece of food.

The Floor Caper

After selecting items from a dinner plate, take a few bites and fling the remainder to the floor. To throw the food further, fling the food from a human's shoulder. If the human becomes annoyed, placate it by offering it a bit of the food or saying something cute and looking innocent.

Eat to Get a Hug

Grab all the garlic you can find - garlic bread, salad dressing, etc. Then give the human a kiss. The human will give you hugs and scratches - anything to avoid getting another odorous, garlic breathe kiss. Also effective is the 'Pepper Kiss'. A kiss after eating hot red peppers or jalapenos will definitely get a human's attention.

cockatoos on a line

Clicker Training

by Garry Wallan

and about Layne Dicker, Avian Behaviorist

If Layne Dicker were to get involved in this type of training,
would the device be called a Dicker Clicker?

And if a grabbing device were invented to pick up the Dicker Clicker,
would that be a Dicker Clicker Picker-Upper?

Also, if the Dicker Clicker was marked with an adhesive identification label,
would that be a Dicker Clicker Sticker?

If the identification label was gross and insulting,
would a viewer suffer from Dicker Clicker Sick Sticker Shock?

If an argument broke out over the identification label,
would someone time the incident with a Dicker Clicker Sick Sticker Bicker Ticker?

There once was a person named Dicker,
Who trained all his birds with a clicker,
They ignored all his teaching,
Kept screaming and screeching,
'Til he noticed that liquor worked quicker.

(This in no way means to imply that Layne Dicker, nor any member of the Dicker Clicker Sick Sticker Bicker Ticker Syndicate would in any way ever ever *EVER* feed liquor to their avian companions. It was just a limerick and the words rhymed. Close cover before striking. Your mileage may vary. One size fits most.)

Garry Wallan writes for the Alaska Bird Club Noozletter, and also entertains many parrot friends on the Exotic-L parrot mailing list. Layne is a noted writer for popular parrot publications, and avian behaviorist.

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Apparently The Parrot

by Garry Wallan

Wallan Family Homepage

When the cat is acting nervous
And is running 'round the floor;
And the dog is softly whining
In the closet by the door;
Not an earthquake nor a twister
Could have brought this to the fore;
It's apparent that a parrot
Has been evening the score!
Fluffy, with her cat toys
Liked to frolic until twilight;
Her playtime was all daytime
Mixed with napping in the sunlight;
Chasing Polly was an new game
Of instinctive feline insight;
But apparently the parrot
Took exception, then a big bite!
Rover was a good dog;
Friend to creatures strong and weak;
Guardian, protector,
Faithful canine, hale and sleek;
One day he ventured over,
Into Polly's cage to peek,
And apparently the parrot
Gave him Screech and Claw and Beak!
"Polly's *just* a dumb bird,"
My friends are prone to spew,
But that tender appellation's
Not for budgie, 'tiel, or 'Too.
Nor any other psittacine;
They rule the world, it's true!
It's apparent that my parrot,
Has just put me in her zoo.
They can greet the day like cherubs,
Chirp and tweet so daintily,
And then rend the peace like warheads,
Fitted hypersonically.
They utter words and phrases,
Sometimes most loquaciously,
It's apparent that the parrots,
Learn quite well from you and me.
The Tornadic Winged Maelstrom,
The Snapping Beak of Death,
The simple sharp profanity
Of jalapeno breath;
The snuggles and the antics,
Using language from the heart;
It's apparent that with parrots,
Contradiction is an art.
This house was once a haven,
Safe for human, dog and cat.
Until the Mighty Parrot,
Came and messed-up all of that.
Now the Winged One is Master,
And an Angel, and a Brat.
It's apparent that our parrots,
Have performed a coup d'etat.

cockatoos on a line

The Creation

(as told by Basil, my U2) here it is: told to Stewart Metz, by Basil the UmbieToo, after a promise of pine nuts

cockatoos on a line

Elliott Bites

A story posted on Exotic-L

by Garry Wallan

Last week, I was trying to get E.T. back into her house so I could go to work. Normally, I am VERY aware of where Elliott is because he hates me like matter hates antimatter. I was focusing on getting E.T. to "step-up" and my brain totally ignored Elliott, who was advancing toward my outstretched arm.

The progression of events, in seconds:

000.00 E.T. steps-up onto my hand.
000.05 Elliott takes a test bite of my juicy forearm.
000.10 Elliott is amazed that he was able to make contact.
000.30 Elliott takes another test bite in a new location.
000.50 Garry's "brain" says "OWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!"
000.60 Garry's "brain" says "Don't fling E.T.!!!"
000.80 Elliott drills for oil, goes for bone, Tyson's my arm.
001.00 Garry's "brain" says "Hmmmm. Major Tissue Trauma. Lose the parrot."
001.20 E.T. takes an unscheduled trip.
001.50 Garry's "brain" tells Garry's arm to pull away from the Birdshark.
002.00 Garry's "brain" begins to assemble numerous invective phrases.
002.10 Garry's mouth begins a constant stream of high-volume cursing.
004.00 Garry's daughter wakes up to words she normally only hears at school.
060.00 Garry, having exhausted English curses, starts using Farsi and Tagalog
120.00 Garry applies Neosporin and a bandage to the gaping wound.
240.00 Garry notices the blood stains on the rolled-up sleeve of his shirt
240.50 Garry starts cursing in Klingon

Later: Garry finally arrives at work with an arm that looks like it came in last in a pneumatic nail-gun fight.

cockatoos on a line


During the Creation, Emotions were being designed.
When "JOY" came time to be, the Creator realized that it was a very beautiful emotion.
So he made it a brilliant green, and called it an emerald.

But "He" realized then that an emerald was hard, monochromatic, and a bit cold, and "JOY" was to be a soft emotion.

So "He" gave the emerald soft, green wings
an orange cap
a luminescent, bright green belly
and a CAPE of feathers
and released it, one day, into our world as "perfect JOY"

But I found it, and call her Sparty LaJoie, the CAPE parrot!

Stewart Metz

cockatoos on a line

Parrot to Human Diseases

by Garry Wallan

I did a little research and discovered that, other than pulmonary chlamydiosis ("Parrot Fever"), there are only six diseases or afflictions which can be transferred from parrots to humans:

  • PEROT FEVER: Marked by up to a 40% loss of height; enlargement of the ears; a squeaky, grating voice; paranoia; a strong desire to repeatedly run and retreat; and occasionally a giant sucking sound.
  • SONIC SHOCK SYNDROME: Primarily marked by a piercing scream with upper harmonics which only dogs and whales can hear. Can also include any or all of the following: insane cackling immediately after performance of a prank or "bad thing"; repeated vocalizations of noises which resemble human intestinal distress or reproductive activity; mumbling conversations which can almost be deciphered; repetition of one side of a phone conversation; and the utterance of X-rated phrases in the presence of house guests and children.
  • MACAW FOOD-WASTING DISEASE: This affliction, while attributed to macaws, can be caught from all known members of the psittacine family. The disease primarily manifests itself in humans by the behavior of tossing food away from the table in apparent disdain, followed later by consumption of the food from the floor, wall, ceiling, clothing, windows, or whatever surface it adhered to. Other symptoms include stuffing food items into armpits or pockets for later eating; mixing pieces of food with drinking water to make a thick, vomitous mess; eating only one form of food to the exclusion of all others; eating only the food that is found on other people's plates; regurgitating food for loved ones; and eating feces just because its there.
  • AVIANASTICS: Usually indicated by the ability to contort the body in the same way as parrots. Sufferers are frequently found clinging to the ceiling near a corner, with their torso twisted horizontally back between their legs. Other body movements and contortions include: hanging upside down from light fixtures while swinging in a rapid figure-eight motion; clinging to adjacent walls with legs at more than a 240-degree angle; and pressing the posterior against an open window frame to poop for distance.
  • CHIRPEES: Primarily indicated by an itch in the credit card or checkbook which then progresses to the collection of at least one of each species of psittacine. Secondary symptoms include repetitive purchases of bird toys; purchase of bird food in boxcar-sized loads; a wallet the size of Detroit to contain pictures of the birds; insane avian naming conventions ("This is my bird Squeeeeeee, and my other bird Foofie, and my other bird Bumpertribblebibbet of Bree, and my other bird Ookie Wookums Bappy Pie."); and active participation in every known Internet bird newsgroup and mailing list, including the little-known alt.compulsion.birds.birds.birds, rec.pets.birds.more, HELLOHELLOHELLO-L, and MASTERBIRDER-L.
  • AVIAN ITERATIVE EXPONENTIAL EXPLOIT EXPANSION (AIEEE): This affliction starts with the recitation of a cute bird story by Person "A", followed by a counter-story by Person "B" of their bird's exploit which is even cuter, more heartwarming, or more adventurous. The back-and-forth interplay continues until the birds being described have taken on qualities usually reserved for Greek and Roman deities. If the stories continue, the birds actually become deities and smash the entire universe, hoping to start all over with a better class of mammal.

And if we find we are displaying any of the symptoms, there are a few support/research groups out there:

  • Aviholics Anonymous: Founded by former EXOTIC-L members circa early 1995. Local chapters may still exist.
  • The Willie Makeit/Betty Wont Clinic: Located in Pismo Beach, CA, this facility has been helping people with bird-addictions for almost a hundredth of a century.
  • Northwestern Midwest Southern College of the East: This school is a hotbed of research into various avian afflictions (such as the UBE, CUBE, and LUBE) as well as avian-human problems like Avianastics and Chirpees. Their current program on clicker training of pet humans is controversial and ground breaking.
  • Dr. Gene Splycer of Blue Gene's Labs, Simi Valley, CA: Dr. Splycer has been hot on the trail of a shared genetic marker for tendencies towards Avian Iterative Exponential Exploit Expansion (AIEEE) and Macaw Food-Wasting Disease. He is currently looking for volunteers to test a new gene therapy technique involving a spatula, a jar of Vaseline, and a blender. Contact Dr. Splycer at (805) 555-1212.
  • Whoolagong Free Flight Sanitarium, Mooloolaba, Australia: One of the finest extended care facilities on the planet. Specializes in care for people who, due to close association with parrots, have simply sailed over the edge of the sanity ocean. There are lots of perches and playthings to keep the "clients" amused; a Manu Mud Wall for neutralizing those spicy lunches; and a Flight Room where flying leaps into billowing piles of cotton simulate the joy of being winged.

cockatoos on a line

Peaceful Thoughts of Solace

I'll lend you, for a little while, a bird of mine," He said.
"For you to love while he lives, and mourn when he's dead.
It may be six or seven years, or maybe twenty-three.
But will you, till I call him back, take care of him for me?

He'll bring his charms to gladden you, and shall his stay be brief,
You'll have his lovely memories as solace for your grief.
I cannot promise he will stay, as all from earth return,
But there are lessons taught down there I want this bird to learn.

I've looked the whole world over in my search for teachers true,
And from the throngs that crowd life's lanes, I have selected you.
Now will you give him all your love - not think this labor vain,
Nor hate me when I come to call to take him back again.
I fancied that I heard them say, 'Dear Lord, thy will be done.'
For all the joy this bird shall bring, the risk of grief we'll run.
We'll shower him with tenderness and love while we may,
And for the happiness we've known, forever grateful stay.

And should the angels call for him much sooner than we planned,
We'll brave the bitter grief that comes, and try to understand."

Author Unknown.

cockatoos on a line


1 Turkey
Corn Pudding
Green Beans
Sweet Potatoes
Mashed Potatoes with Gravy
Cranberry Sauce
Hot rolls
Relish tray
Pumpkin Pie
Whipped Cream
Hot Coffee

Get up early in the morning & have a cup of coffee. It's going to be a long day so place your Parrot on a perch nearby to keep you company while you prepare the meal.

Remove Parrot from kitchen counter back to perch. Prepare stuffing, remove Parrot from edge of stuffing bowl. Stuff turkey & place it in the roasting pan, remove Parrot from edge of pan. Have another cup of coffee to steady your nerves. Remove Parrot's head from turkey cavity and re-stuff voided area. Prepare relish tray, remember to make twice as much so that you'll have a regular size serving after the Parrot has eaten his fill.

Remove Parrot from kitchen counter. Prepare cranberry sauce, discard berries accidentally flung to the floor. Peel potatoes, remove Parrot from edge of potato bowl. Arrange sweet potatoes in a pan & cover with brown sugar & mini marshmallows, remove Parrot from edge of pan & replace missing marshmallows.

Brew another pot of coffee. While it is brewing, clean up the torn filter and old coffee grounds from around the pot. Pry coffee bean from Parrot beak. Have another cup of coffee & remove Parrot from kitchen counter.

When time to serve the meal: Place roasted turkey on a large platter, cover beak marks with strategically placed sprigs of parsley. Put mashed potatoes into serving bowl, rewhip at last minute to conceal bite marks and talon prints. Place pan of sweet potatoes on sideboard, forget presentation as there's no way to hide the areas of missing marshmallow. Put rolls in decorative basket, remove Parrot from side of basket along with beaked rolls, serve what's left. Set a stick of butter out on the counter to soften - think better and return it to the refrigerator. Wipe down counter to remove mashed potato talon tracks.

Remove Parrot from kitchen counter & carve the pie into serving slices. Wipe whipped cream off Parrot's beak & place large dollops of remaining cream on pie slices. Whole slices are then served to guests, beaked-out portions should be reserved for host & hostess.

Place Parrot inside cage & lock the door. Sit down to a nice relaxing dinner with your family - accompanied by plaintive cries of "WANT DINNER!" from the other room.


cockatoos on a line


By Gayle Soucek

Twas the night before Christmas and all through the flights,
Not a bird was stirring since I turned off the lights.
Clean dishes were stacked by the freezer with care,
So in the morning they would be filled with fresh healthy fare.
The babies were handfed, the pet birds out to play
Everyone was settled- I was done for the day.

When down from the basement there arose such a clatter
That I ran for the stairs to see what was the matter
I raced down the steps and turned on the light
Glancing first to my left and then to my right
It was then that I noticed the now empty spot
In the cage where the Cockatoos should be but were not!

"The Goffins are missing" I yelled to my spouse
While I shuddered to think what they'd do to the house
My fears were well founded, I soon came to know
As I surveyed the destruction in the bird room below.
Feeding doors had been opened, the dishes all tossed
Bags were ripped open their contents all lost.
The marauders unfastened from the cage tops each toy.
Which they tossed at the occupants below with such joy.

The other birds sulked as they viewed the whole mess.
This Cockatoo Duo had created such stress!
I searched through the room, my frustration profound
Those two fiendish beasts simply weren't to be found!
It was then that I noticed the Senegal staring
As his eyes flashed with anger I saw he was glaring
Towards the side of the room at an overturned pail
I followed his gaze and saw a flash of white tail

Holding my breath I approached with great care
Was it possible both could be hiding in there?
I snatched up the bucket and the villains were exposed
They knew they were busted and for a second they froze.
Then with a Cockatoo shriek and scrambling of feet
They raced for their cage in hasty retreat
I slammed the door shut as I trembled with rage
"Don't you two ever, ever come out of your cage!"

They stared at me smugly cheeks puffed with contentment
Their mission accomplished they ignored my resentment
"I'll clean up tomorrow," I said aloud with a sigh
As I walked toward the steps one 'Too said "bye-bye."
As I turned with a grin I felt suddenly calm
Their sweet little voices could act as a balm

For along with their mischief, they brought love and fun
It was hard to stay angry despite what they'd done.
My jangled nerves and life's hectic pace
Had made me forget what was in my face
I didn't need gifts, fancy stuff from the store
I had all I needed, my birds and much more!

My dear friends and family, my health and my spouse
Everything that mattered was right here in this house
So Santa I thank you but I don't need a lot
I'm learning to be grateful for all that I've got.
If you come down my chimney to bring something new
Just leave me some padlocks so I can lock up the 'Toos!!

cockatoos on a line

Home Parrot Network

Just in time for the 1998 holiday shopping season, the Home Parrot Network has a deal for YOU!
32 exotic Christmas songs to delight your earhole:

by Garry Wallan

and largely about the Amazing Amazons

I Saw Joanie Kissing Kodiak

"I saw Joanie kissing Kodiak,"
"Underneath the mistletoe treat stick!"

Oh Christmas Tree

"Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree,"
"Your branches are inviting me."

"I'll climb real high, above the room."
"I'll dominate, and then I'll zoom."

"Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree,"
"Your size really matters to me!"

Pepper Claws Is Coming To Town

"He's charging my hand,"
"He's biting it twice!"
"Kodiak says: 'Aww, that's not nice!'"
"Pepper Claws is coming to town."

"He's always on a diet."
"He's grumpy, that's a fact."
"But he's been known to sing a song,"
"When swinging in a sack!"

Brawwwk The Hungry Parrots Sing

"Brawwwk the hungry parrots sing,"
"Here's our list of treats to bring."
"Chunks of fruit and vegetables nigh,"
"And a piece of pizza pie."

Away In A Nest Box

"Away in a nest box,"
"Pine chips for a bed,"
"A little lone Ringneck,"
"Lays down his sweet head."

"A mouse from the meadow,"
"Tried to join in this space,"
"But Mom and Dad Ringneck"
"Just chewed off his face."

I'm Dreaming Of A Bright Christmas

"I'm dreaming of a bright Christmas."
"Full spectrum lighting all aglow."
"Psittacines do need this,"
"For vitamin-D synthesis,"
"Birds need more photons, don't you know."

Have A Happy Bappy Christmas

"Have a happy bappy Christmas,"
"Birdy-wirdies of good cheer."
"If you grinch out, and cry or pout,"
"Then you can kiss my rear!"

Oh Come All Ye Hybrids

"Oh come all ye hybrids,"
"Ye mixtures and ye crossbreeds."
"Oh come ye, oh come ye,"
"Chaotic DNA"

Up On The Cage Top

"Up on the cage top,"
"Food I seek,"
"Thrown there by a mad Caique."
"Bits of spaghetti,"
"Pretty Bird, too,"
"And a lump of greenish goo."

Jungle Belles

"Rubbing on my perch,"
"Is no way to procreate,"
"I want a willing hen,"
"Please be here by eight!"

"My hormones are inflamed,"
"The nest box is all right,"
"Come sing a bawdy birdy song,"
"And boink with me tonight!"

"Ohhh, Jungle Belles, Jungle Belles,"
"Let's go all the way,"
"Do the Dance of Joy with me"
"And lay some eggs today, HEY!"

And 22 more hits, all on two CD's or four 8-track tapes!

Plus, for the first 1000 customers who respond to this offer, we have free PEAC Scratch-N-Sniff parrot t-shirts!

Don't let this holiday season pass you by without a song on your beak!

Use your charge card and we will bill you in four monthly installments of $29.95, or send check, money order, and your first-born male child to:

Exotic Christmas
Box 9999
Hoax, AK 99666

Sorry, no CODs, or HALIBUTs, or SALMONs.

cockatoos on a line

Top 10 Signs Your Bird Has Learned Your Internet Password

Author unknown

  1. E-Mail flames from some guy named "Beaky."
  2. Traces of nutri-berry in your keyboard.
  3. You find you`ve been subscribed to strange newsgroups like alt.recreational.birdtoy.
  4. Your web browser has a new home page:
  5. Your mouse has beak marks in it .
  6. Hate-mail messages to Apple Computer Corp. about their release of "CyberCat."
  7. Your new ergonomic keyboard has a strange green and white spots on it.
  8. You keep finding new software around your house like BirdinTax and WarBird II.
  9. On IRC you`re known as the Ironbeak.
  10. There are little birdy carpal-tunnel braces near the play gym.

cockatoos on a line

Human-Avian Insanity Reaction Syndrome

by Garry Wallan

Many months have passed since the initial release of information regarding HAIRS, or Human-Avian Insanity Reaction Syndrome. During that time, scientists at Uranus Interactive have been hard at work examining data and doing research. The results of their labors are presented here in a new set of avian behaviors which trigger HAIRS in those humans who are owned by members of the psittacine community.


Thanks to the tireless research of Doug Roberts, the Unknown Bird Emergency (UBE - "yoo-bee") was finally fully examined and described. The UBE manifests itself in birds when the avian subject reacts in abject panic to a threat that is totally unobservable to humans. The avian subject will suddenly transform from a quiet bird at rest to a loud bird moving at the speed of sound in no particular direction. For clipped birds, this usually results in a parabolic trip to the floor and a high speed run into furniture.

Two common variations on the basic UBE are:

  1. The Cascading Unknown Bird Emergency (CUBE - "cyoo-bee") where the initial UBE triggers UBEs throughout the flock, much like an atomic chain reaction, which results in a cloud of high-speed agitated birds in the air and on the floor.
  2. The Looping Unknown Bird Emergency (LUBE - "loo-bee") which works much like a CUBE, but with discreet launching of UBE-affected avian objects until the initial UBE energy is passed back to the initial avian subject who then performs the Terminating Unknown Bird Emergency (TUBE - "too-bee"). Whether or not the Terminating UBE is indeed a discreet form of UBE is still under examination: "TUBE, or not TUBE ... that is the question."
The human reaction to the various UBE forms includes loud verbal utterances; loss of motor control resulting in dropped objects; general UBE-like behavior; and in extreme cases, loss of bladder control.


This behavior is often displayed by an avian subject who envisions themselves a rival for the affections of a human in the household. The avian subject lures their perceived human competitor into close proximity with cute avian "pet me" postures and "kissy" noises. When the human victim (called the "sucker" by research teams) reaches a critical distance, the avian subject transforms their inviting "Love Beak" into the "Clamp of Pain," biting into the nearest soft tissue offered by the human "sucker." For a brief moment, the avian subject may be transformed into a Swinging Facial Ornament as the "sucker" pulls away in a vain attempt to avoid the tissue trauma which has already taken place. Some "suckers" have been known to expose themselves to the "Love Beak" on repeated occasions, always believing the avian misdirection. Some human victims (labeled "dumb suckers" and "organ donors" by research teams) have responded to Love Beak behaviors offered by Cockatoos and Macaws.


This is a behavior where a "reproductively motivated" avian subject selects an inanimate object in the cage, usually a perch or toy, as a target of physical gratification. The Perch of Joy behavior is usually reserved for those moments when influential members of the community, the clergy, parents, or young children are present and there is an absence of any other event to divert their attention. If a guest is actually in direct contact with the avian subject, the chance that physical gratification will take place on their finger or shirt sleeve is directly proportional to their importance to the human victim. The culmination of the effect on humans is grossly apparent by the loss of verbal skills when trying to explain the gratification activity to a young child who has taken an unholy interest in the futile reproductive performance.


Though the avian research subjects were members of the Pionus family, this primarily passive behavior is exhibited by all psittacines. The effect is manifested when a human observes a young bird of a type which is not already in the human's household, resulting in a powerful acquisition impulse for "just one more" avian subject. If acquisition takes place, the human reaction is mitigated until another new psittacine is encountered. Avian cuteness or cleverness can amplify the human reaction resulting in multiple acquisitions "for breeding purposes."


Though the nomenclature suggests a viral infective agent, the term is a bit misleading. The viral activity is more like that of a computer virus, affecting human cognitive functions. While similar to Pionus Envy, ACV is not passive in nature and can be inflicted on humans regardless of the makeup of their household flock. ACV actively attacks the neural pathways of the human brain resulting in immense acquisition impulse pressure. The method of transmission has yet to be identified, though the effect has been clearly observed.

Once the avian subject has been contacted by the human, be the subject a rescue bird, a lonely bird, a distraught bird, or an abnormally cute and attractive bird, the Avian Cognitive Virus begins its attack on the human brain. In a short time after the "infection," the human victim begins to experience avian sensory input of startling clarity. Here is a common scenario:

The viral reprogramming of neural pathways has progressed to the point that the human subject begins to hold conversations with themselves: "Ohhhhhh, it's so CUTE! Listen! It's SAYING something..."

"Mommy! MOMMY! Why didn't you take me home with you?"

"Oh no! What have I done?"

"Mommy! I want to go home! I'm scared and cold and there are ANTS and SNAKES here! There's poop on my perch! I had seed hulls for breakfast and my water is green and wiggly!"

Omigawd omigawd omigawd, what am I going to do?

"Buy me Mommy! Come and get me! SAVE ME! I won't eat much, and I'll be quiet, and I won't chew on the woodwork much. MOMMY! Someone else is here. He is looking at me! He is hairy and sweaty and has scabs and gross, yellow, beaver teeth! He's opening the cage! NOOOOO! MOMMY! HELP! HIS BIG HAIRY HAND IS GRABBING MY..."


Suddenly, without conscious thought, the human ACV victim is in their car, driving to the pet store, rubbing their credit card as they speed down the road. Eyes afire, biceps flexing, the victim manifests the self-image of a Guardian Angel on a Holy Mission and NO ONE is going to stop them.



Thank you for your attention. Uranus Interactive will continue to explore the frontiers of avian-human relations, reporting the results back to you, the human Monkey Slave victims. We march under a banner that reads "A mind is a terrible thing."

cockatoos on a line

The Creation Story as told by a bird.

  • On the first day of creation, God created the bird.
  • On the second day, God created man to serve the bird.
  • On the third day, God created all the plants of the earth (especially the sunflower) to serve as potential food for the bird.
  • On the fourth day, God created honest toil so that man could labour for the good of the bird.
  • On the fifth day, God created the toy so that the bird might or might not destroy it.
  • On the sixth day, God created veterinary science to keep the bird healthy and the man broke.
  • On the seventh day, God tried to rest, but He had to feed, clean, and amuse the bird.

New! If you enjoyed the snippets of humor from Garry Wallan, you'll love his new book, The Wacky World of Wallan: Psittacine Psillyness from Garry Wallan, a Really Funny Guy. It is available from Parrot Education & Adoption Center's website in the Gift Shop section. The cost is $18.20, which includes the shipping charge. The book includes "illustrations", if you can call them that. Check out his website for examples of his artwork!

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Most recent revision October 20th, 2007.