Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Raising Alexi

Hello friends,

I feel sure you'll like my latest story: recently a man presented himself at our outpatients department with a small sick bird that was in need of help. It was a poor young parrot of only a few weeks old, unable even to stand or feed itself. I saw him for myself and a sorry sight he was!

Alexi the baby ParakeetIt is illegal to keep any indigenous wild animal or bird in Goa, so this baby was taken into the safe custody of the rescue centre.

The vets identified him as an Alexandrine Parakeet, not a native bird of Goa but originating from elsewhere in India where this baby was probably stolen from its mother.

His future was uncertain but the team was determined to do all they could to nurture this parrot and help him survive. He was named Alexi and all the staff, but particularly Manik and Abbey, took turns to feed and give him water at very regular intervals. Alexi soon began to grow and thrive but his appetite and social demands grew with him! He proved seriously high maintenance!

Alexi gets a helping hand with feedingSo at present he is being fostered at a safe home nearby where his needs are catered for as closely as possible to mimic the relationship he would have had in the wild with his parents. They would normally be in attendance for up to three years, the age when an Alexandrine becomes mature and independent.

After weeks of being hand fed, Alexi is now helping himself to his favourite foods, which are at present mango, guava, chillies and lightly poached dahl with peas and carrots cut into Alexi-beak sized pieces.

Alexi is growing up healthy and strongHe just loves to be touched and likes to climb, chew, flap his growing wings and bounce and chuckle with joy at bath time.

As Alexi is not a domestic creature it would be lovely eventually to release him into the wild, but there are no others of his species here in Goa and he has become tame and domesticated as a result of having to be hand reared. So his future may be in a suitable sanctuary where he could live happily for as long as the next four decades.

One thing's for sure, he wouldn't have lasted much longer without the treatment and care of the team at the centre. I hope things continue to go well for Alexi, he's a bright little bird with a real zest for life now he's in good hands.

Bye for now!

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