Possible actual cause of death in my aged (31 yr old)cocketiel
by John Flanagan
(Oro Valley, AZ)
Around a quarter to one in the morning(7/18/10), I went into the kitchen of my home to grab a snack from the refrigerator. As I passed the cage of our beloved cocketiel, "Charlie", I noticed that he was positioned vertically down down, tail in the air leaning to the side of the cage. His head was completely in his water dish, and he was dead.
This bird has been with us since 1980, born in 1979, and was 31 years old. He seemed healthy, was eating well, happy, always given lots of attention, chirped and climbed up the bars of his cage. He had a stroke about 20 years ago and could not fly. His left wing drooped to the side but he was otherwise fine.
My wife and I were very upset about his passing. We were wondering if he could have had a brain hemmorage, an aneurism, or some kind of fatal heart attack or stroke. Since his head was completely in the water dish, at first I thought maybe he got stuck and drowned, or the fall from his perch just happened to land in his water dish and broke his neck. I guess we were wondering if a bird of his advanced age would likely die of a heart attack and just fall off his perch, landing wherever. We feel real bad about this situation and hope he died without prolonged pain. Thanks for any feedback you could give.