Ricco - Congo African Grey Parrot


Hi my name is Ricco and I was placed by the Polite Parrot in my new home. I'm was a really bad feather picker as you can see by my first picture.

Thanks for your well wishes..... Always remember "Have a Grey Day!"

Ricco, CAG Parrot

August 11, 2001

This is what I looked like the day that I got to my new home. I came to live with my sister Squeak a Timnah African Grey and my brother Nuk a Congo African Grey like me. I have tons of new toys to chew and play with. My mom spends lots of time picking out new toys for me so I won't pick my feathers any more. I've got so much to do I don't know what to do first. Right now I'm a little scared but I know Nuk and Squeak from boarding at the Polite Parrot. So it's not like I'm living with strangers. Wish me luck, I've got a long road ahead of me.

September 19, 2001

Hey everyone! Look at me I have feathers. It took me about 2 weeks before my fuzz came in but now I have feathers too. They come in real handy now that the weather is getting colder. My mom thought she might have to buy me a coat for the winter. I haven't picked a single feather since I got here. There is just too much to do and play with. I get about 5 hours a day out of my cage to play and spend time with my sister and brother. What fun.

October 11, 2001

Yep it's me Ricco. I now have chest and wing feathers. Do I look great or what? You might ask what the secret to my success is. Well, let me tell you. I get nothing but great food; pellets, fresh organic veggies, some seed treats and a shower everyday with organic aloe vera and distilled water. I don't itch anymore and I've got better things to do than pick my feathers. I spend lots of time preening my new feathers and taking real good care of them. I learned all of this from my brother and sister. They keep me on my toes too. I love to spar with my sister Squeak. She, like all little sisters comes in MY cage and steals MY food, plays with MY toys and makes a big mess. Then goes back to her nice clean cage. I've learned to keep an eye out and send her back to her own "room". Geez, what does a guy have to do around here to keep his little sister in line. I'm sure that my big brother Nuk thinks I'm a pesty little brother too. Well catch ya on my next update. I'll try to get a family picture for that one.

November 1, 2001

Like I promised everyone I got a picture of me with my brother Nuk (center) and my sister Squeak (top left). That's me on the right, but I bet you didn't have to guess. Nuk is camera shy so my mom had to sneak up on us on our new Parrot Tower. It is the coolest thing. My mom and Aunt Michelle went to a trade show last month and got it for us. We have the greatest time eating and playing on it. We even let our buddies the Flock of Tiels play on it once in awhile. They have those tiny little feet though so it's fun to watch them try to crawl around on it. Aunt Michelle got a even bigger one then the one we got because she has really big birds. You should see them they look like Teradyactals. Those Cockatoos and Macaws have really big beaks. Yikes, they scare me sometimes.

Here is another close up of me so you can see that I really do have feathers now. I have 4 flight feathers on each wing. Watchout! I'll be airborne soon.

November 22, 2001 - Thanksgiving Day

Hello everyone and Happy Thanksgiving! Well here I am 3 months and 11 days later in my new home and guess what...I'm gliding. Yep, that's right. I know longer crash and burn when I jump off of my cage. I can glide with the rest of my flock. I'm much more confident now and not near as scared to climb all over my parrot tower and my mom. I'm getting quite adventurous. I actually cruise all over the bird room now and I'm not afraid of falling. I have flying lessons everyday. My mom holds my feet and we fly through the house. I'm getting down that flap, flap, glide so when I really can fly on my own my muscles are strong enough.

Well here are the things that I have to be thankful for this Thanksgiving...First my new feathers, my new house, lots of toys, plenty of great food to eat and all my brothers and sisters but most of all my Aunt Michelle for loving me enough to find all of these things for me.

I love you Aunt Shelly!

Talk to you all around Christmas with my flight plan.

December 25, 2001

Merry Christmas to everyone! Guess what I got for Christmas...a new baby sister! Lily is a Timnah African Grey Parrot like my big sister Squeak. She is very scared and freaks out when anyone comes near her. She doesn't like to come out of her cage and won't let my mom near her. Aunt Michelle says she needs some time to get adjusted and mom has to work with her so she isn't afraid anymore of what her other owners did to her. Besides Lily I got lots and lots of new toys. I got a new Birdie Kong, a wood toy with lots of beads and wooden shapes to chew and a grape vine wreath from my Aunt Michelle with red and green popcicle sticks. Well, I'm just a little bit further closer to flying. I have six flight feathers on each wing now and I can glide from my cage top to the coffee table which is about 15 feet. I still don't have any lift because I have no primary feathers yet. I'm counting the days...I'll get back to you around Valentines's Day. Maybe I can get a picture of my sister Lily then too.

Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

March 1, 2002

Well, here I am and I'm happy to say I'm fully feathered. I can FLY. I took my first flight today. I hopped off my cage and the next thing I knew I was flying. I swooped into the living room and landed on the couch. I'm the happiest bird in the world. As soon as it gets warmer out Mom says she is starting to take me for car rides so I can get used to riding again without being scared. Oh, I got a picture of my sister Lily. She is still really afraid and doesn't come out much. Take a look at here picture on the Adoption/Rescue page.

I don't know how often I'll be talking to you now that I'm busy swooping around the house but I just wanted to thank you all for checking up on me. It really means a lot that you cared enough to check back.

Thanks again and remember all you humans with feather picking parrots out there. Don't give up hope. Remember what I looked like 8 months ago. Don't ever underestimate the will power of your parrot. We don't want to pick we just don't know any other way to tell you we're not happy.

Never give up!



April 28, 2002

Just wanted to stop by and say hello! I've been busy helping my mom work. She says it's really nice to have company during the day. I love to sit here and watch her work.

I have gone through my first real molt. It was really cool to see my old feathers come out and bright new ones come in all by them self. I didn't even have to pick them out they just came out on their own.

I get to start going on car rides now that the weather has warmed up and I might be making my first real trip back out to Aunt Michelle's in the next few weeks. Just to see how I do on longer car rides and to see all my old friends at The Polite Parrot.

Well, time to get back to work. I just wanted you all to see that I am still fully feathered and keeping busy.

November 5, 2002

Sorry it's been so long since my last update. It has been a really busy summer. I have a new brother named Tigger. What a busy guy he is. He is a Timneh African Grey like my sisters Squeak and Lily. He is much older than us. We think he came from the jungle in Africa. He makes all kinds of different noises and doesn't like other birds. You can see his picture in the photo gallery here at the Polite Parrot website. Oh Boy, he gets into lots of mischief. Speaking of mischief...I had to get my wings clipped. I was flying around the house and crashing into things. I could fly but I hadn't figured out quite how to land or steer yet. Mom and Aunt Michelle thought that it was for the best. I can now glide gracefully to the ground without taking out half of the livingroom doing it.

I had a little set back late this summer. One of our dogs got really sick and died, even though we said lots of birdie prayers for her. Mom was a wreck and very sad and being the sensitive guy that I am. I didn't know what to do so I thought that if I pulled out a few feathers and gave them to her it would make her feel better. Guess I was wrong! Now that everything has settled down again and I'm getting more attention I've left my feathers alone again. I'm also going through my "terrible twos" that doesn't help. It just goes to show that once a feather picker always a feather picker. I can go back to it just that fast.

Have a great fall and I'll stop by again during Christmas.


January 27, 2003

Hey everyone! Happy New Year and all that! Everyone here is doing well. I included a picture of our birdroom (center). See how much there is to do here. I'm the one on the far left and my sister Lily is next to me in her white cage, Nuk is on his door too on the right side under his swing.

My clipping is under control again. As you can see by my pictures I did a number on my chest. Kind of looks like a skid mark. Mom threatened that if I picked out my feathers again she wasn't going to knit me a sweater for the winter and boy I'm glad I stopped. It is really cold here this winter. I would have been in big trouble with out my feathers to keep me warm.

I got to see a new vet for my annual exam last month. He comes to our house. It is great for me because I don't like going in the car and my brother Nuk gets car sick. YUCK. Nothing like seeing ground up pellets flying around the car. Makes a guy even more jumpy about car rides. Anyway, Dr. Ness came and checked us all over. I got a clean bill of health except he thought I could use a little more Calcium in my diet. So now I get to eat egg shells ground up in my food 3 times a week. He also gave me some Bach Flower drops for my water and spray bottle. I had that little set back with my feathers last fall because of our dog Olive crossing the Rainbow Bridge and my first real molt. I'm still a little cranky about my "terrible two" stuff. I love the stuff Dr. Ness gave us. It really calms me down and I haven't clipped any feathers since mom started using it.

I better get back to the bird room it's time to play. I'll stop back again closer to spring. Mom is planning on upgrading our bird room again...We're getting new cages. That way every one will match. Like it really matters to us if we all have green California Cages.

Stay Warm,


January 19, 2004

We've finally gotten our own website. My brothers and sisters can all visit now. I think it will be cool!

Here's my annual update! It's been a tough year. I started feather picking back last January, just a little on my chest and here and there. Then I decided that that wasn't enough so I picked a little more and a little more and by July guess what? I was almost naked again. Mom went away on a busienss trip and I missed her so much. By the time she got back a week later I had a great summer look. Who need feathers in the summer anyway! My mom kept telling me as the summer turned to fall if I didn't grow back my feathers I would be awful cold this winter. So I saw the reasoning behind that and decided it might be a good idea or I'd have to wear a sweater. So I let them grow again. Mom seem to think that my feather picking might have something to do with my moulting. I seem to start picking everytime I start to moult our some feathers. It always seems to begin in the places I begin to moult first. The Bach Flower stuff really does help. I started taking that last winter. I get all itchy though when my new feathers come in. I'm also eating Red Palm Oil and Red Palm nuts. They have lots of great stuff in them and I guess my grand parents ate them in Africa. All I can tell you is they make a really big mess and I love it. I get them on the walls and the floor and all over me. Mom is researching what other things African Greys eat in Africa.

We are getting a new bird room in the spring! We did get all our California Cages this year. They are great. Lots of room and eazy to clean. Like I care. Our bird room will be the top floor of our house. We will have 3 sky lights, a kitchen for our food, built in air cleaners and lots of windows to look out of. Being 3 floors up we will be able to see for miles. Just like being in the tree tops. I'll make sure we get some good pictures when it is done.

I'll stop back again in a few months to let you know how we all are doing.

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