Monday, May 30, 2011

I got a picture!

I'm sharing with you the very first picture of the babies the breeder sent me.
The oldest baby, which I believe is the one furthest to the left on the picture and not looking at the camera, is 18 days old now. The second baby, which I've decided was mine, is the one who's eye you see opening, and she's 16 days old. The third baby, which I believe is the one standing taller, if only because he's leaning on my little girl, would be the little boy of the clutch and is now possibly 13 days old (I never was really sure of his hatch date).

They are still a bit prehistoric looking, but adorable none the less.

I did let out a little scream (happy scream) when I saw I received a picture. The Boy, who was in another room at the time, immediately asked if I had received a picture. I think he knows me...

Anyways, I did say I'd wait to get a picture before I say the name I picked out, but I think I might wait just a little longer until I have a picture of her and only her.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

One year ago...

One year ago, I met Pixel for the first time with the intent of actually bringing her home. Yes, I had met her previously in that pet store, but a year ago today, I went to visit her in "first" home.

She was curious, stepped up willingly. Spent some time on me before going back on one of the perches in that room.

Part of me wanted to bring her home that day but I knew a vet visit was required first. Vet visit that wouldn't happen until a little later in June. But that went well and home she came.

Hard to believe it's already been a year!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Fussy Meyer's learning to play!!

Petey isn't much of a lover of toys.

Sure, since I got him, he started playing a bit with things offered. He's more keen on things that are somewhat mechanical, but it doesn't last long. He likes to bash toys, but again, it's a temporary thing.

He's not much of a chewer. For years, I've offered wooden toys and nothing.

He even got his own custom T4W toy, which was mostly paper cups (he likes to shred paper) and leather and plastics and a tiny bit of wood. Not too long ago, I noticed he started chewing on the wood - not that I saw him do so, but there were little chunks missing.

But now, just now, he was on one of the atoms and we saw him chewing on a MPBT Avian Mini Maze Muncher toy! The same toy that he's been close to for a few months now and never even acknowledged it, now he was actually CHEWING!

So proud of him!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The results are in....

..and babies #1 and #2 are females!

I've been asked which one I would prefer. I said, for now, baby #2 because of the missing shell for #1 for a while. However, I did ask if there would be a possibility that I could meet them both before they get separated, as the other two babies will go to the pet shop very early after having been pulled out.

But there, in that clutch, is my future little Cape girl!

A landing

This really wasn't a planned shot. I was all ready to take a picture of him playing with the toy and he decided to go for the bowl. Happy he stayed relatively within the same frame so he remained somewhat in focus!

You can see the picture larger and on black here.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Joey and Zuri enjoying the new twirl toy

I put up the toy on a hanging gym I had purchased a few months ago when a local store was undergoing renovations and wanted to get rid of a few things that were taken up place and therefore had a considerable sale on the items in question.

In the past, the atom had been hanging from the ceiling but that particular hole didn't do and the atom fell. So instead of trying it back up and risking another incident with possibly some injury, using the gym as support seemed perfect. And I could put the new toy on it as well!

Joey did the most damage to the toy today, chewing off a few pieces of balsa and some beads while Zuri mostly just chewed here and there.

These pictures will give you a sense of scale for the toy. The birds are sitting on a medium size Mother Pluckin' atom, which the website describes as being 18" in diameter.

This first picture was taken with all natural light. I deemed it a bit dark and took the flash out for the next few pictures.

Decked Out Stainless Steel Twirl

I decided yesterday night to start adding things to the stainless steel twirl toy base I received a little while ago.

So out came the containers of wood coins, wood beads and wood whatever as well as stringing material. I ended up using some paulie rope and some leather.

It ended up weighing rather heavy. Right now, it's not in anyone's cage and is on one of the play structures out in the living room so every bird can get a chance to chew at it.

View from the "front"

View from the "back"

This has once again done a noticeable dent in my wood coin reserves - good thing I'll eventually will have more coming from Things for Wings!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Messy beaks

Tonight on the menu was some Andean Ambrosia bought from Avian Organics.

It apparently was a hit with most (read everyone but Piper who's somewhat of a picky eater and Joey who isn't the biggest fan of cooked foods).

For some reason, the Boy went in the room mid way through their dinner time. Immediately he called for me to come and check Petey. I couldn't resist but take a video...

I also would like to point out that when we went back later to take them out of their cages, Shade was *still* eating..

The hard balsa and some perches

A friend of mine on Avian Avenue (parrot related discussion forum) had purchased some balsa a while ago from Things for Wings. However, it turns out this batch of balsa was harder than what her flock was used to and they didn't care for it.

She kept talking about it and eventually I "joked" that she should send it my way for my little beavers and then discussion turned serious and I ended up purchasing the balsa off her hands.

This is only a small fraction of what I received - I believe I had three other small parcels with the same amount of wood that I haven't yet opened.

I didn't know what to expect about the actual hardness of the wood. While it is harder, or rather denser, than what I've seen before, it didn't seem like anything my guys couldn't handle and they've proven they can chip at the blocks. I am. however, considering bringing them somewhere (since I don't own a saw) where I could cut them in smaller chunks which would make it easier for them to handle - the shape is rather awkward in their feet.

While we had the discussion of purchasing the balsa, my friend also asked if I would be interested in some ribbonwood perches she had ordered custom made by Exotic Wood Dreams but these ended up not being a perfect fit for her flock (she has an extensive collection of ribbonwood perches of all shapes and sizes to start with..). She sent a picture and I agreed to take them. They look really nice and two of them, the narrower ones, seem to be perfect for Shade for whom I use smaller diameter perches given she requires them for an old foot injury (from the baby days).

She also was very kind and sent me along some macaroons, her favorite kind, but they didn't last long enough to be featured in a picture...

By the way, my friend has a blog as well, you can see it here:

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Baby Cape update

The egg shells were sent for DNA testing last Thursday.
Results should be sometime next week or early the week after that. Next Monday is a Holiday here in Canada so that might delay things a bit and I really hope the shells make it to the lab before the possible Canada Post strike.

So...I should know very soon if there is a girl amongst those three babies!

And yet another T4W order

Yes, another Things for Wings order. This arrived earlier this month but I just took very long to take pictures. I think these were ordered when there was the buy 4 of the same, get one free sale.

Mind you, where orders at T4W are concerned for me, this is a rather small one.

What did I get.

Wood. More willow and cottonwood coins since my sting at making homemade toys had depleted my stock quite a bit.

I also got a few colorful dowels with holes in them to use as toy bases (like the rolling pins featured in the homemade toys post) as well as a few butterfly leather toy bases.

Finally, I got a few feet of slim paper rope to see how I like it for making toys and received 4 complementary 6" ocotillo perches to use as the base for a swing (Thanks Danita!).

T4W is currently having a 15% off everything but bulk items. It's a great time to shop!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Dashing Red-bellied

On my computer desk, I have a very basic perch that was sold to me as a foraging tray. Basically, it's a cafeteria tray with a raised pvc perch. Nothing fancy, but it does allow for a bird to be perched close to me when I'm on the computer.

Normally, it's Joey's hanging out spot. However, his sister has slowly taken a liking to it as well, since it means that she can be close to me when I'm spending time with Shade on me while at the computer.

Tonight, Joey started there. For whatever reason, he moved on and Pixel took his spot.
Later on, he wanted to come back, flew over, saw the spot was taken and flew back to the table where the Boy sits with his laptop (there are also two Java table stands on this table). He moved in on the Boy, meant to go up his arm but Petey was already on a shoulder (and Petey doesn't share shoulders) so I think he felt a little left out.

Eventually I took Pixel and faster than you can say go, Joey took off from where he was, and flew straight to the perch. I mean there was no way he was going to waste a second and risk loosing that perch again. He even slapped the Boy with one of his wings on the way over!

He's now happily sitting on the perch.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Grey Feather Toys order

Back in April GFT had a sale.

I received it earlier this month but failed to post about it.

It wasn't a big order, got a few toys and some stainless steel 2" washers to help attach things to the cage of the future Cape parrot as the bar spacing is slightly wider than the one for the cages of my smaller Pois.

The toys.

Well the main reason I ordered was for the Megaphone. Did it so hurriedly that I didn't notice there were two sizes. Meant to get the bigger one for future Cape but ended up getting the smaller one. Mind you, that in itself isn't a bad thing since I figured Joey would probably also enjoy such a toy and it's now in his cage.

I also though that Piper might enjoy a toy to bang around and the Tweedle caught my eye so I added one to my cart.

It looked so cute and there was one available in a larger size (Tweedle medium), I put one in my cart and it's now in Petey's cage (he does like toys to bang around as well).

Finally, I also got a cage invader because I also thought it looked neat and it now resides in Pixel's cage.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

And this makes three..

Baby #3 has hatched today!

No big surprise though, was expecting it.

Now the waiting for the sexing, which apparently will be done with the eggshell (I guess he found the one for Egg #1 after all) and shortly.

The wait shouldn't be too long anymore.
Mind you, it's a little daunting to be that much closer but still far away..

Monday, May 16, 2011

Avian Organics - The Auction loot

A little over a week ago, Avian Organics hosted their first Facebook auction.

Most of the loot were items from the now discontinued line of Loros Naturales toys - Doris having chosen to concentrate on specific toys that would allow her to showcase sample sizes of her Avian Organics food items rather than just toys.

There were also a few food items to be won.

The bidding process was fun and I kept on top of things (I really wanted to win). At one point I believe someone thought they would sneak in at the last minute. The auction ended at noon Pacific, which the bidder didn't consider, swooping in just before noon Eastern..To be honest, I nearly made that mistake as well but figured I would ask for clarification before hand.

My package came today and I was really eager to open it. What did I get?

The food - two bags of Veggie bars (which is great because I was running low..), the equivalent of two bags of unsalted organic pistachios (also running low..) and some Cazuela (you guessed it, I was also running out of it).

The toys

These were called "Pod Cup Rattle" toys. I'm foreseeing Joey enjoying these.

The toys on the extremities were called "Concho" and the one in the middle "Sarita"

A lot of larger foot toys - which would be great for future Cape parrot.

A whole lot of smaller foot toys - which will be happily destroyed by the current flock of Pois.

This specific toy is still available. It's called the "Loro Explorador" and comes with some Mango Ginger Minis to put in the holes. It's a foraging toy obviously and it was added to the package before the auction at my suggestion (I really wanted to try it). While it might be a bit large for my current flock, I might just try it out of cage with them and if not, it'll go to future Cape parrot.

You might have also noticed the card mentioning free shipping. Doris had mentioned that she would include a surprise for the auction winner. I had looked frantically through the box when I first opened it, although what exactly I was looking for, I had no clue. When everything seemed to be accounted for, I figured I'd just take a closer look at the items I got, starting with the Loro Explorador and within the bag that contained the toy and treats was the card. It's a pretty awesome gift.

Finally, there is one last item.
This wasn't part of the auction. A longer while ago, Doris had mentioned possibly wanting to sell this item. So I contacted her and after setting for a price and all, she turned around and very VERY generously decided to offer it to me for free. It's a toy base made of stainless steel sold by Grey Feather Toys. This particular model she had had custom made and it's slightly shorter than the real model although still very big. My mind is already busy at work with trying to figure out what I will be making with it.

So, once again, thank you soooo much Doris!

A little side note - I've been rather consumed with posting about baby Cape updates and that combined with Blogger having been down for a while a few days ago, that I've neglected (if you can call it that) to post about other items that I have ordered/received over the past week. I couldn't resist posting about the auction items though and will probably eventually get to the others, having made a small order at Grey Feather Toys, one at Things for Wings and having received items from a forum friend.

Focus on Petey

Petey often doesn't fully cooperate when it comes to taking pictures with the end result that there aren't too many of them.

However, I got him to put up with my need for some pictures long enough yesterday to get a few decent ones. It wasn't easy though, as he insisted to move a lot in the beginning and I ended up with quite a few blurred shots.

Looking at something intriguing on the floor...

Wanting that intriguing thing - I'm happy he didn't jump/fly to it as I think he was intently staring at my feet..

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Hatching update

Baby #2 has hatched today!!

Two down, one to go! Should probably happen around the 17th.

Trying out TOPs

Just put some Totally Organic Pellets (or TOPs) I've purchased recently out on the play stands in the living room.

Shade went straight for them. Made a bit of a mess as in she would eat but waste a bit of it. She didn't want to hold the pellets and a bit fell. She's normally not picky though so her eating them wasn't really surprising.

Petey also tried and ate it. He's not very picky with pellets either though.

Pixel tried a few. Ate them. No big surprise there as she is pretty open to new food.

Piper looked at them but I'm afraid he might have found them too big. I'll try to put my hand on a package of the new crumplet size, but am not sure where to look. I'm sure the other birds would also benefit from the pellets being smaller.

The true test though, Zuri.

Zuri is a picky eater. But Zuri ate them, a few to boot, and actually HELD THEM IN HIS FOOT! So little wasted! Wow.

Joey didn't try any yet - too busy taking a nap.


I gave some to Joey and he ate them all. Held them and had minimal waste.
Zuri also came to me for more - he never does that for pellets so I am most definitively impressed.

Shade has started to hold them in her feet as well.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Let the hatching begin!

Just received an email from the breeder.....

Baby #1 has just hatched!!

It apparently is still all wet.

Oh and he'll have to do DNA test with blood since it's egg shell has already disappeared. Where exactly I don't know, I asked.

So that means a little longer wait to know if there is a girl but I can deal with it.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Waiting on the eggs to hatch

The Cape eggs should start hatching any day now.

The first one could be later today, could be tomorrow, could be Friday. It all depends on when the hen started brooding. The breeder did say that she normally waits on the second egg to be laid, and this happened on April 16th (first egg was April 13th, the third April 19th or 20th). The incubation period is 28 days so if we consider that she started brooding on the 16th, that brings the hatching date to May 12th-13th. Given that the first egg hatches normally two days before the second, then May 11th-12th seems to be it.

And although they won't look anything like this for a little while, here's a picture the breeder sent me of a baby from a former clutch. I find it adorable and love the wee little tail!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Hyperactive Red bellies

They don't always sit still for pictures...

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Sunday Pictures - Two Red bellies and a Senegal

So more pictures from today. These are, as the title suggest, of Pixel, Joey and Shade. Both Meyer's didn't really want to cooperate.

Both girlies decided to pose. In fact, it's quite rare that you don't get them looking quite dignified.

Even when Shade yawns, there's an elegance to it.

Then came Joey's turn..And he was certainly enthusiastic about it!

But he also decided to "properly" pose for some pictures and although these two are quite similar, I couldn't pick which one to post so I went with both.

Sunday Piper Pictures

There was some interesting light filtering through the windows today so I decided to take advantage of it and took a few pictures of the birds with the natural light - something I've missed all winter.

As I took them, I thought the ones of Piper by the window would most likely come out the nicest. While exposing perfectly for his pale face, everything around was darker and I really liked the mood it created.

And while I would normally bunch up all my "Sunday pictures", I think Piper deserve his own post.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

It's sometimes good to read instructions when they are given

Earlier this week I received my shipment of sprouting seeds and sprouting jars from mumm's Sprouting Seeds. I had initially told myself I would wait until the week-end to start a new batch because one, I had a current batch of Avian Organics Avian Vitality mix going and two, it would be best to take pictures (and be able to take them with some natural light).

Well I caved..sorta.

I decided Tuesday evening to try one kind. I grabbed one of the two smaller bags and it turned out to be broccoli. As I took one of my brand new jars out, I figured I might as well read the little insert that was in the jar. This was one of the lines:

"Sprouts like broccoli & radish have a very extensive white fuzzy root hair system. (Some people mistake this for mould.)"

Right, fuzzy hair system often mistaken as mold. Made a mental note to remind myself of that one.

But..what do you think happened?

On Wednesday morning, they didn't grow much. In fact, by the end of the day, some had started to split a bit but no significant growth was to be found. (Please note that the soaking was not to be more than two hours and I did that Tuesday evening).

Fine I thought. The actual broccoli package said they were ready in 3 to 6 days.

This morning (Thursday) as I did my morning rinse (I rinse once I come home from work as well), I saw a few tails emerging from the seeds. Ok, there was some progress.

Then something funny happened.

The Boy had worked from home so when he picked me up at work, he told me the sprouts have grown tremendously during the day. He was right. I came home and it definitively wasn't the same sight as it was in the morning before I left!

And then I saw it. The white fuzz. And my brain immediately thought "oh no, that's bad!"...until my memory kicked in and reminded me about the fuzzy root hair system.

Want to know what is even funnier? There is no longer any fuzz. They have grown so much within the last few hours, they now all, or at least almost all of them, have rather long tail, tiny leaves starting to bud and taste quite good.

A small sampling of what they look like now, shot with a macro lens so they appear much bigger than they are.



I will be letting go another day or two. I'm curious to see if they'll grow much more.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Another toy order!

I received this order yesterday as well from "Les Jouets Rosie".
Jacqueline, the owner of the online store, is currently having a sale. Order $99 worth of stuff, excluding toy parts, and you will get 30% off (note that this does not apply to the shipping costs).

I haven't put an order in for a while so I figured, why not?

I'll be honest and say that I did get a few things more so for the unborn Cape, to have a few toys of proper size hanging around, but if there is no girl Cape, well these can be redirected to my flock.

So what did I get?

Beads and a double perch.
The beads weren't on sale but I thought it would be a good idea to stock up a bit. The double perch is a bigger version of one I bought for each of my Pois - and it is quite bigger (I wasn't expecting such a difference). All of my Pois love theirs.

Toys - "Petit cube à surprise" (left) and "Mille-pattes" (right)

Le "Petit cube à surprise" is, as it's name suggest, small. It is tightly held together though with all the leather. It is a foraging toy and there are some nuts within.

The "Mille-pattes" is made of mostly pine. While the toy is large, the pine is thinly cut. I currently have Rosie toys with bigger slats of pine which my current birds are able to chew down so this one shouldn't be too much of a challenge.

Finally, some TOPs (Totally Organic Pellets) and some Red Palm Oil. I've been meaning to try both for some time.

There have been quite a few sales going on these past few weeks. I know I'm still waiting on an order I put in with Grey Feather Toys and there will be another coming from Things for Wings (the buy four of anything, get one free..) but I think that will be it for a while..