This Rescued Umbrella Cockatoo Was Captured in 1927.
Fergie the U2, or Umbrella Cockatoo, has become more a part of the family than the kids were.
Fergie is a U2 with more history and life than most of us. She was captured in 1927. I adopted her as her family was going overseas and could no longer take care of her.
I believe she lived with them for eight years and they had re homed her from a bird rescue. Fergie's history is totally unknown from that point on. What I do know is that she was meant for me.
Her last home, due to job constraints, left her without a lot of companion interaction. She was in need of a lot of family intervention and trust and a good Avian Vet.
Being older, having bad eating habits AND sleeping habits all needed work and habit changes. She has, in five years with us, gotten all the best we can give her to maintain her health and quality of living.
She, without hesitation, learned my name, my adult son's name and my husband's name. My name was immediate. We bonded the day I picked her up! And my son became the source of her love attraction and she yells his name loudly. My husband is "daddy". She wanted to know us as much as we wanted to know her.
We had wanted to rename her, and I thought better of it as she said and used her name a lot in different contexts. "Fergie beddytime", "Fergie loves you", "Fergie Girl" "Fergie's Bad" This was not like changing a dog's name this was like changing your child's name after calling him the same name for years.
Fergie's cognitive thought is right on, she knows what is going on and how to respond. She talks pretty fairly and appropriately and she is most manipulative if necessary. A sound routine was the real key to integrating her into our life and us into hers.
The first large change we made in her life was to give her peaceful rest. She is by nature a busy body and likes to be in on all the racket. We got her a smaller sleeping cage and her own room with TV and radio. She goes to bed each night and gets her 12 hours, which I think has had a lot to do with maintaining her health.
She has had many vet checks and special vitamins to get her blood levels up to normal and a lot of cuddle time, she is like the "other child" in the home. Her singing, her squawking, her talking and her interaction are more a part of our family today than our children were.
We have always had birds. We have one Green Cheeked Conure (rescued) one Fischer's Love Bird (rescued) and three Pied Tiels (that have been with us for 12 years).
Re homing Fergie was a very researched choice. I read as much as I could find before I started looking to adopt a Cockatoo. And I am still reading. I was fortunate to be in Florida at the time were there was a larger group of people that enjoyed parrots, so my support group was plentiful.
Now that we have moved to the Northeast, I have found the internet to be the most helpful source of information for parrot owners. And it has helped me find new sources locally for vets, boarding and other parrot groups.
The flock made the car trip great to the northeast(to my surprise) and are now happy housed in their new (larger) home. I was really worried about moving them, as I had read so much about how large changes can upset their apple cart. BUT none of them seemed to mind in the least. Thank God.