A pet parrot that spoke with a British accent when it disappeared from its home four years ago has been reunited with its owner – and the bird now speaks Spanish.
The reunion was brought about by a Southern California vet who mistook Nigel, an African grey parrot, for her own missing bird.
Teresa Micco tracked Nigel’s microchip to Darren Chick, a Briton who lives in Torrance.
“I introduced myself and said, ‘Have you lost a bird?'” Micco told the newspaper. “He initially said, ‘No.’ But he thought I meant recently.”
When she verified Chick’s name and said she had his African grey parrot, “He looked at me like I was crazy.”
He said his bird went missing four years earlier.
Little is known about Nigel’s whereabouts the past four years, but Chick says the bird’s British accent is gone, and it now chatters in Spanish.
Chick says last week’s reunion brought tears of joy to his eyes – despite the fact that Nigel bit him when he first tried to pick him up.
Micco said the behavior was not unusual and that Nigel would settle back in soon enough.
“He’s doing perfect,” Chick told the newspaper by the week’s end. “It’s really weird. I knew it was him from the minute I saw him.”
It’s the fifth parrot reunion facilitated by Micco, who has been running ads for her own missing bird for nine months. That parrot, Benjamin, flew the coop in February when it darted out a door that was left open.
Julissa Sperling found Nigel outside her home and brought him to Micco after seeing one of her ads.
But first, she took Nigel to her dog-grooming business.
“He was the happiest bird. He was singing and talking without control,” Sperling said. “He was barking like the dogs. I’m from Panama and he was saying, ‘What happened?’ in Spanish.”
Back in April, a crime-fighting parrot has saved his owner after she was pushed to the ground in a park. The female victim had been taking Wunsy the African grey for a walk and fly in Sunny Hill Park, north London, on Friday when she was grabbed by the shoulders and shoved.
The parrot, who is taken to the park daily in a harness and lead, flapped his wings and squawked, causing the attacker to flee.