I've lived with Peachfront Conures Aratinga aurea for 30 years. I've bred 'em, trained 'em, even visited Bolivia to observe them in the wild. For more about me, click right here.
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the end of an era - 2021-01-30
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1:32 p.m. 2021-01-30
My sweet Sheldon, gotcha day July 30, 1990, passed away peacefully on Jan. 29, 2021, only weeks before he would turn 31, a very old age for a small conure like a peachfront. He woke me early with a soft croak, drank a lot of water, and mostly rested against my heart. For the first time, he showed no interest in looking out the window or at anything around him, and I suspect he had a stroke and was blind in one eye. Both eyes turned black, but he kept turning one side of his head to look directly at me with the good eye. When I had to set him down for a few minutes to feed the other birds, he snuggled up to Plushie and fell asleep. I think he was dreaming, but then he slipped away and stopped breathing. I knew he was very old, and he had become very creaky-voiced and fragile, but he was interested in all around him and was active in keeping a good lookout for cats until that very last day. He was such a smart bird. Even though he was an aviary bird for decades, when his mate passed away at age 27, he learned to be a pet who came out on stick and hand, took food, and "helped" me watch birds at the feeder through my office window. Within the last few weeks, he had learned to walk into a birdie backpack so I could take him for walks around the neighborhood-- a Christmas gift for my Amazon, but -- as it turned out-- Sheldon took to the backpack walks instantly and is the one who set the example for Cookie to follow. He will be missed. Having spent half my life with this bird and forty years with peachfront conures, I feel incapable of expressing the deep meaning of these birds to my life. Without them, I wonder if I even would have had much of a life. They gave me affection, meaning, joy, inspiration.
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