Marvin, the Blue Throated Macaw

Marvin’s first professional shot.  Photo by S. Jay Tomioka

Many things have taken place since our last meeting, and we’ll be tackling them one at a time, if a bit out of order.  First, I’d like to introduce Marvin, our Blue Throated Macaw, and the newest member of the flock.  

Marvin at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Singer Island

We failed our saving throw against “Rescue Parrot” at a store in Deerfield.  To say he’s a rescue would imply that he came from hard times- not the case.  Marvin came from a very loving home with a wonderful Dad who loves him very, very much.  In fact, His former Dad is heartbroken about having to give Marvin up, but circumstances came to be, and Marvin had to find a new home.  He spent two months on consignment before we found him this past week, and now he’s happy in our home!  The bonding process is slow, but going very well indeed.  The best part is that Marvin’s former Dad is more than welcome to come and visit his sweet boy whenever he likes!
From left to right:  Marvin, Jay and Marlowe.
Marlowe is pretty washed out in this shot… I’ll be sure to add more photos of him, too!

The Blue Throated Macaw is a very special parrot.  Listed as Critically Endangered  there are estimated to be between 150-200 of these birds remaining in the wild.  Their numbers in captivity are much larger, and many efforts to revive the species are being made.  Even with numbers climbing in captivity, the parrot is an uncommon find.  Marvin is a very, very special parrot.  You can read more about them here.
Marvin’s first day home!

Marvin has some interesting traits.  Slightly smaller than average, Marvin has been diagnosed with dwarfism. His legs are set a bit farther apart than is normal, and he heavily favors one over the other.  As such, he’s slow moving and seems to have trouble staying atop some of his perches.  No problems though- It’s by no means a difficult task to make the minor adjustments needed to ease Marlowe’s leggy life.  We’re beginning with strength exercises to help Marvin regain proper and full use of his under-favored foot.  
Marvin came to us with the warnings of noise complaints and screaming problems.  Which is a bit of a mystery to us, truth be told!  The breed as a whole has a reputation of being fairly quiet, opting for mumbles and grumbles to the full on squak.  Further, we were very surprised by how quiet Marvin really is! 
Now, don’t get me wrong.  This is still a Macaw.  I mean, it’s easy to say “Oh, sure.  He’s quiet!” and have that be true to us, but another household might think he was a constant chatterbox.  It may simply be that Jay and I are accustomed to bird noise (for instance, I often do my writing and other work with shooters plugs in, depending on the time of day!  In fact, the big pink shooter’s cones are on now, as it’s evening and they’ve both begun to sing the songs of their people.) that others might find unbearable.  Or, perhaps there was some outside factor in the previous home that caused Marvin some distress.  It’s not to say that his previous home wasn’t filled with love and care for this beautiful bird, but usually when a parrot is screaming and screaming, something is wrong.  The trick of it is, however, it’s often pretty difficult to figure out what it is they might be upset about.  It could be anything from a change in someone’s hair color to moving the television.  You just never know.
Marvin does get vocal in the evenings, just like all parrots.  He sounds out his mighty call, which I discovered this evening, can be heard all the way down the block.  I’m sure the neighbors just loooove us now, considering that you can also hear Marlowe, our little Quaker Parrot just as easily.  Perhaps I should give our neighbors shooter’s plugs, too.  Thank god we don’t live in an apartment, right?
Marlowe, our Quaker Parrot.  Don’t let his small size fool you.

As Marvin and Marlowe get used to one another, Jay and I will be continuing our work around the house.  The next big project will be ripping up the carpets in the living room and hallway of the older side of the house- turns out there’s beautiful cypress wood floors under there, and they’ve been hidden under carpet for thirty years!  I can’t imagine how much sand has collected under there.  I’ll be sure to keep it as we go and show you when we’re done!!
About Pea Kay

Pea Kay, otherwise known as Tonks, The Unhinged Knitter, moonlights at night as an infamous Cupcake Warrior. To learn more about what she does, visit the core pages of!

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