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2 June 2010 / Liz Johns

Drunk And In Charge Of A Pair Of Wings

It had to happen. Parrots have been chattering in imitation of our speech since we first captured them and made them our pets. It was only a matter of time before they would start imitating our lesser habits. Yes, parrots, and more specifically the red-collared lorikeets, are going out, getting drunk, and finding themselves unable to fly home. It’s a disgrace.

These cheeky little parrots who like to be formally known as Trichoglossus haematodus rubritarquis, live throughout northern and western Australia and are a highly sociable and noisy species. And even more so on a Saturday night when they’ve been out drinking and falling from the sky. “It happens every year around this season, they lose all balance and we find them fallen out of trees and the sky”, says Lisa Hansen of Ark Animal Hospital, Palmerston, Darwin. Apparently the birds are supping on some unknown fruit, nectar, or something similar, which causes them to effectively get drunk and lose control of their flight coordination. Luckily the Ark Animal Hospital is on hand to pick up all these feathered reprobates, treat them, and release them back into the wild. Hopefully with a lesson learnt.

P.S. If you do click on the link above for the Ark Animal Hospital website, I recommend checking out the Baby Boobook Owl. It’s as cute as it sounds.


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