Travels with Pickles

Pickles vs. The Fly Paper

Before this post goes any further, I would just like to EMPHATICALLY exclaim that I am the victim here!  Dad caused all of the ruckus and I, the world’s most handsome bird, was forced to be slimed by vegetable oil and then suffered the indignity of a shower!  Where is the sympathy for me?


Clearly, the only winner in this scenario was the fly paper.  Here’s the scene, Dave is working in his office and it’s a busy morning with phone calls.  Pickles is playing quietly on his tree.  Dave decides to take a break, stretch his legs, and bring me a roll of flypaper as I stitch outside on the patio with the dogs.  Pickles gets territorial, Dave gets grumpy, and somehow macaw and flypaper meet on his right wing.  Cussing and screeching ensues as I remain outside trying to keep the chaos, drama, and stress to a minimum.  Dave removes the flypaper and Pickles wing is covered with the tacky, waxy stuff.  He tries to clean it off, I come inside and take over.  He does a little research and we discover that vegetable oil will remove the ick. 

I take over and soak a microfiber towel in vegetable oil and begin to wipe down his wing.  Trying to be gentle while trying to apply as much pressure as possible to get the tacky mess off him before there are larger issues.  It isn’t a fun process.


Just look at me, all goopy feathered and shiny and NOT in a good way.  It was embarrassing and Dad still owes me a BIG apology.

He truly was not a happy bird by this point, although amazingly he didn’t complain too loudly and never tried to bite me once while working the mess out of his feathers.  I let the vegetable oil soak in while Dave took the dogs potty for me since it was that time of the day.  Then the true fun began as we then got to take a shower.  Pickles despises getting wet and it is generally a miserable experience for all involved.


Into the shower he went without a peep, unusual to say the least.  I take a shower, he gets a good soaking and not once does he talk, flutter, or dive bomb the shower floor.  Unfortunately, I notice the bald spot when he is soaking wet.



There was no blood on any of the feathers that remained attached to the flypaper, we both checked and double checked.  So now all I can see is this bald spot on his chest, even as he sits here on my knee while I type and he dries  He has need feathers poking through his skin that I can see as he sits here which is reassuring.  What has me mildly freaked out is that this may cause plucking issues to start and that is NOT a road I want to walk down.  I’m praying that the new feathers will come in quickly enough that it won’t develop as a pluck spot.  Needless to say, Dave will feel horribly guilty when he sees the bald spot and blame himself. 


The truth is that he will get extra time and attention to keep him diverted from the bald spot.  Plucking is just too big of a concern to worry about indulging him for a week or two.

For now, he hasn’t made any attempt to groom the bald patch and so I’m cautiously optimistic.  He may be a messy pain in the rear but I wouldn’t have him any other way.  Nothing is sadder looking than a wet bird huddled between clean clothes on laundry day for making his parents feel guilty.  Time to go find a better alternative to flypaper!