Florida, United States
Posted May 30, 2015
I was given Ara and Heidi while I was in Oregon. Ara was hen pecked. Literally. He was paired with a mate that was temperamental, obstinate and really not that nice. She plucked him, on his neck. But given that, Ara was still a sweet bird.
I built a huge flight for them that took up about a third of my living room. Let me qualify, it was no longer a "living room", it was "The bird room". I had nine birds.
Ara tried very hard to be a good mate. I don't know why, but I decided to try to breed them. I had experience breeding exotic birds and had never had any difficulty. So I built a Macaw sized nest box. There was mating going on and Ara's mate laid two eggs. Ara was the dutiful male and fed her during her time in the box. Also, his feathers started to grow back. The eggs were not viable. So there were no chicks.
At a difficult time in my life, I split with my husband. That meant leaving Oregon and moving to Florida. Suddenly, I had to choose which pets to keep and which pets to find homes for. I definitely couldn't travel with three Macaws, an Amazon parrot, a Sun Conure and two pairs of Cockatiels. Not to mention three large dogs.
At the time, I was a member of a bird club. I went to a meeting and stood up to ask my fellow members to help me find homes for my birds. I met a man that was an expert on Macaws. He had a large home and had about a dozen Macaws of all varieties. He agreed to take my Scarlet and began helping me find homes for Ara and Heidi. We agreed that they should be split up. My friend found two very good homes for my Macaws. Heidi became a pussycat as the pet of a gentle lady and Ara became the pet of a young man with experience, youth and patience on his side. The last time I heard, Ara's feathers had all grown back and he was a very happy bird.
My experience with my Blue and Golds was unusual. In my past experience working with them, they are usually very gentle, friendly birds. I think the relationship between Ara and Heidi was toxic. I would still recommend a Blue and Gold as a companion animal. Just make sure you have someone to leave them to when you pass! They live a long time. Some as long as 60 to 80 years.