Runaway parrot returns after three-month adventure
Tuesday, June 5, 2012 at 12:17
City Parrots in Psittacus erithacus - African Grey Parrot, Rescue

Deri Groves with African Grey parrot Alfie THERE'S no place like home according to Alfie the runaway parrot.

Traditionally from warmer climes in the African rainforest, the prized bird has spent the last 13 weeks frequenting trees near his former home in Cwmbran.

He flew off his perch in early March, after owners Deri and Michelle Groves left a door ajar when they moved house to Llantarnam.

Devastated by Alfie's successful bid for freedom, the couple put posters up in the hope their beloved pet would be found.

Several eagle-eyed residents phoned Mr Groves to say his five-year-old African Grey Parrot he bought for £750 as a baby, was still in the area.

Spotted at allotments by Rhiw Melin, near the Queen's pub and at a BBQ at Penyrhoel, where he ate food from someone's hand, it was clear Alfie was enjoying the warm weather like the rest of us.

But after spending some time in a cherry tree near his former home in Upper Cwmbran, where he lived until December, his final destination was fields several four miles away.

"The vet told us Alfie would make his way back to by his old house as they are very intelligent birds.

He used to look out of the window to the fields where people saw him," said Mr Groves.

Last Saturday, the bird's three month adventure finally came to an end, when again, the temptation of food was too good to resist.

Local farmer John Roberts and grand-daughter Anna coaxed him down from another tree, before putting the bird safely in the shed.

Although Mr and Mrs Groves were over the moon to see Alfie again later that day, it seemed he had picked up an unfortunate habit.

"We cried tears of joy. But all he kept doing was wolf-whistling!" 48-year-old Mr Groves said.

A week on from his exertions, Alfie is still a little worse for wear- having been pecked by other birds jealous of his colour, he has lost his tail and is extremely undernourished.

However, Mr Groves hopes his friendly pet will soon be on the mend with treats of monkey nuts, apples and the occasional cooked roast dinner.

The parrot is also recovering his voice by mimicking Mcdonald's adverts off the television.

"How he survived was a miracle. I'm really thankful to everyone who helped find him," Mr Groves said.

The pet owner, who also has a Boxer dog Tyson, is now urging other owners who have lost their pets not to give up their search.

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