Making Space For a Ring Neck

The Best Birthday Present

Great excitement and a whole lot of changes going on at present in our household, as we now anxiously await the arrival of our latest family member.

Why the excitement you may wonder, Simple, ever since I was a little boy, I have always, wanted to own a parrot.

This desire, started many, many years ago, when my folks, elder brother and I were staying in a Boarding House, I believe we recently had come up from Cape Town and where settling in Johannesburg. The owners of this boarding house had a parrot that in my memory recall was the most magnificent creature that I had seen in my short existence, I was then only 3 years old.

Oodles of Unquestioning Love and Devotion

My Early Fascination

Totally fascinated by this parrot I held it awe as it also frightened me. We lived upstairs on the first floor. Of course there was a staircase that led down to the ground floor, the stairwell formed a recess in which the parrot and it's very large cage was parked during the night or when it was raining especially during a thunderstorm. Then the cage was draped over with a dark, thick and heavy blanket. Invariably there would emanate load squawks and protestations, as she hated being left out of the main stream of activity.

During the day, the cage was moved forward into the court yard where it would lord over the area preening and talking, chattering and issuing curt instructions to the world. It did not like you touching the cage, and would fly across and take a chunk out of any careless finger that encroached within its space.

As I was a bit of a loner often would go and sit in my own little world and amuse myself, I would often actually sit and talk to that parrot, especially during those long cold rainy days when he sat in his cage and would sit on the step and we would keep each other company.

We moved away from the boarding house and this was the first of many partings from those special types friends that I had to experienced. I was devestated and sobbed for many a day over my not seeing him again.

Fritzie, a Jack Russell cros Dachsie
Fritzie, a Jack Russell cros Dachsie
A Veteran of Some 14 Summers, Auntie
A Veteran of Some 14 Summers, Auntie

And the Years Rolled By

When I lived with my parents, we always lived in blocks of flats, what most countries refer to as apartments, and you could not really keep pets there, so we had an occasional budgies, which were great, but not really a parrot, my mom would not have one, ma's rules.

I then left home, not to a place of my own, but rather to a place for two; yes I'd got married and left home to set up my wifes and I own little nest, so to speak. My hopes of then owning a parrot where again dashed, as along with an old fox terrier, came her cat, I actually knew that they would come with and it was not even a negotiable that they would have stayed behind at her parents.

Added to the fact that, with cats, as parrots have the need to get out of its cage and walk around, so as to reduce boredom and make it a more social type of pet, that could not happen. The flat we moved into was too small.

As the numbers and mixes of the pets changed over the years, and we were actually offered a parrot, a five year old Macaw, as the owner was going overseas, the Macaw had taken to me, but screamed it's head off and demonstrated an intense dislike to my youngest son, we unfortunately had to decline, as that stress imposed could kill the parrot.

I was rather upset, as they did not even seriously entertain the thought of taking my youngest with them, so that I could keep the parrot.

When I Was Very Young
When I Was Very Young
A Nice Day To Sit & Stare
A Nice Day To Sit & Stare

Don't think Garfield ever did this?

No there was no meat in here
No there was no meat in here

Now At Last

My life has had many changes and now married for a second time to a someone that also likes thought of having a parrot so.

Some 55 years later, I am about to be given the best birthday present that I could wish for, an Indian Ring Neck. It is now being hand reared and will be able to feed itself within the next couple of weeks. Just in time for my Birthday!

Why wait so long before getting one for yourself a long time ago. You may wonder but it was something that never really happened.

I am now getting daily progress reports on "Gumpie" as, the wife travels with the breeder on a daily basis, as they both work for the same company, as the bird is being hand reared it travels with them in his traveling box.

He/she now has learnt how to grip and spends a good part of the nearly hour trip perched on the finger of who ever is the passenger for the week. This started yesterday, as over the weekend, it had outgrown the perpetual need for keeping itself in a dark corner.

We have the cage ready for her when it is time to progress into one. Over the weekend we went through to several shops and pet supermarkets to shop for what we feel would be suitable educational toys for IRN of his or hers intellect. We settled for a few but as we were informed by those in the know, the toys need to be changed frequently as they are can get bored.

Hours were spent by me and the wife, google-ing and wikipedia-ing away over website after website to glean some information to enable us to raise this ring neck into a properly bred bird with suitable refined manners and of course only using only respectable vocabulary.

What we I did learn is that there is a wealth of information out there. Yes $47 for a video on the Secrets of Raising - $58 for Learn The Body Language etc and multi $$$$ a plenty for all aspects of how to this that and the other, as I said A Wealth full, leaving you to line other pockets.

So we now have to rearrange the furniture, to accommodate the insertion of a cage, bring out a drop sheet so as to keep the floor tidy. Listen to it speak to it and enjoy the pleasure of its company.

Like with every pet, give them a home him, and love them, feed and keep their environment clean and if they are sick and ailing take them to the Vet. You will receive the benefits of it from them with that incredible unconditional love that they give you.

Hey Hey The Gang's All Here
Hey Hey The Gang's All Here

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Comments 20 comments

NYLady profile image

NYLady 8 years ago from White Plains, NY

Enjoyed reading this! So glad you're finally getting your wish! Let us know how it goes...

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

NYLady, as I say I am only getting her in a couple of weeks, but will do a follow up hub with photos once he/she is settled in and the character forms. Thanks for the comment.

G-Ma Johnson profile image

G-Ma Johnson 8 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

yes please do sounds very exciting...and wonderful hub as always...G-Ma :o) hugs

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thank you for the comment G-Ma, will do a special hub for "Gumpie" once it arrives, with a regular quarterly update to the hub. {;-0)

pjdscott profile image

pjdscott 8 years ago from Durham, UK

Some wonderful writing here and it made me sad that we're not in a position to keep a pet (dog) at present. My brother-in-law also has a bird, although not as exotic as yours! You're absolutely right to get it since it's obviously getting an adoring and appreciative family!

May you enjoy each other for a long time.

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Pjdscott, thanks for the comment, it is sad not being able to keep a pet, as they do enrich your life. I hope to enjoy he/she as long as I can. The Ring Necks have a lifespan of up to 25 years, so God willing, a long time is forecast.

ajcor profile image

ajcor 8 years ago from NSW. Australia

good hub - thanks - I know you will enjoy your bird but in all truth I still can't understand why all those years ago, the owners of the Macaw didn't even think about doing a swap for your youngest!!!

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

I did try, really hard, even offered to throw in a bag of huggies. That did not work, so I upped the anti and offered to cook for them every night that they were still here. That to fell on deaf ears, as they were moving in with hid parents for the remaining 2 weeks! What can I say, you cant fight against Ma's cooking.

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 8 years ago from South Africa

Good Hub

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks for the comment Sixty.

Constant Walker profile image

Constant Walker 8 years ago from Springfield, Oregon

Good stuff, Rodney.  I've always thought parrots were cool birds.  I saw a kinkajou yesterday morning on Regis & Kelli and was blown away!  What an awesome looking little creature!  Wouldn't that be a fun pet?

PS: Check out these cool kinkajou images.

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Constant, checked them out, the Nagappie, that I described is very similar however a much shorter body though. Well this parrot is coming shortly, I am counting the days now. Thanks for the interesting comments.

Constant Walker profile image

Constant Walker 8 years ago from Springfield, Oregon

Good luck with the parrot. Publish some pics, eh?

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks, will publish those pics, as soon as I can. Will have to hub as already "Gumpie" has a stiry atteched.

goldentoad profile image

goldentoad 8 years ago from Free and running....

I had to back track to this one but really enjoyed it. About a year ago, my wife started pressuring me for another kid. I said, get the current one out his diapers and then we'll talk. Frustrated, she went out and got another dog. Its been close to a year now and she's bothering again, despite tough times, this hub really got me thinking about a parrot, as I know its either I put in some "work" or head to the pet store.

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Goldentoad, if you do get a parrot, it is a life time commitment, just like a child, only they do not leave home. This ring neck is going to, bar accidents, or escaping into the wild, be around for up to 30 years from now. They have perhaps the shortest life span.

Other species of the parrot they say if you are old enough to have make a will, you are old enough to own a parrot. As some of them live in excess of 100 years plus.

Be that as it may, I had been in out of action, read "What happened to a month of my life", part 2 still to be written, and this little character has been a great help in my rehab process.

Thanks for the comments

April 7 years ago

I hope life is wonderful for you and your new friend. I am the proud owner of a male Ring Neck and have been for a 11-yrs. They make wonderful pets, outside of the mess and their extremely loud screeching on They're very smart and fairly easy to train.

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 7 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Yes indeed April, they are fantastic to own and very little trouble.

Yes the mess and the constant need to talk to you and nibble your ear, sometimes getting a bit carried away they indeed a pleasant companion bird.

Thanks for your comment.

YoYo 2 years ago

It could. Parrots have preferences to peploe, sounds, colors & shapes; just like human toddlers do.But what would concern me MORE is the chance that this cage was painted with a toxic substance. Unless it was powder coated by the reliable company who made it; I would sand it down and repaint witha bird safe paint- or just throw it out.Is this a second hand cage? Or did you buy it from a shop (weather it be online or in person)? If you bought it from a shop; which shop?

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 2 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks YoYo, I did buy it from a specalist shop! Petmasters in Boksburg, Gauteng. My little boy is well alive and thriving. He has now the added companionship of two African Greys, totally spoilt over and above thier cages, they have the ownership of an intire room in our complex unit.

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