Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Tweet Mystery

We never know what we'll see when we walk out our front door.  I like that.  I want my life to encompass the unexpected.
Last Friday, at sunset-happy-hour time, Denny and I took libations to the back porch for front-row seats at the evening hummingbird wars.  Fall migration is in full swing and hummers exercise feisty, and often competing, ownership of our feeders and flowers.  The swooping-chattering-diving spectacle holds us captive.

But that day, farther out, a mystery alighted. 

See the bird pecking on the rock in the photo above, white with gray and blue patches?  About the size of a cardinal, longish tail, pink legs.  Chirps like a parakeet...

How did he arrive in our arid Texas hills?

What larger-than-a-pet-store-budgie species is he?  

Will he stay?  If he does, how will he survive the winter?

Some mysteries are solved by time, while others remain forever a reason to walk out the door, eyes open. 

September 1, 2010:  Thanks to new friend Deb of Front Porch Perspectives for identifying our visitor as a pied-budgie! 

Copyright 2009-2010 Kathleen Scott, for Hill Country Mysteries. Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.


  1. It's a Budgie. It sure looks like one anyway.

  2. I am sure some cat will make a nice meal out of that.
    It is cute, though.

    Our friends had a pigeon come by and it was very friendly and it would sit on their shoulders and come inside the house. ( ewwww!) They had no idea who's pet it was. They had to move so I am not sure what happened to it.

  3. too funny.
    and sad.

    I remember a budgie escaping ( or finding short lived freedom , depending on your perspective ) when I was around nine, living in Vancouver. We scoured the skyline and trees and shrubs for weeks always hopeful for the return of our beloved Bobby.

  4. Poor little dude! Maybe he'll keep coming back, and befriend you, and move in. . . I can hope, right? :(

  5. At our old house, we had a green and yellow parakeet who showed up pretty regularly at the feeder. We thought he was an escapee, like our green parrot had been.

    Close by, there was a whole community of pocket parrots (their real name escapes me). Apparently, they can live well in our environment. That was the DFW area. A bit colder winters, on average.

    This one is a pretty one. Hope he comes back for you to enjoy, again.

  6. Surely this is not a migrant? !

    20 yrs ago in Vero Beach I heard a different bird sound out my window. I went out on the porch and saw a cockatoo sitting on our little bridge over the pond. I got my lunch and slowly moved to sit on the step aboutI 10-15 feet away...I through it crumbs from my sandwich, luring it towards me until it was within inches, then I held out my hand and it hopped on my finger...I slowly moved toward my house and thought, What do I do now? The only place I could think of was our glass shower that looked out onto our back yard. I advertised free in the newspaper for one found ...several people called and claimed it was theirs, but finally one woman in particular described the band on its foot and said she'd lost it a few days ago about 15 blocks from our house...she'd forgotten and walked out of her house with it on her shoulder. As a widow she was so grateful to get it back...we missed taking a shower with it!

  7. It has come back five days straight...and counting. We've scoured the Internet - NOTHING. It is a true Hill Country Mystery. But we're happy to have him and hope our sanctuary keeps him alive...

  8. Those are some spectacular close-ups!

  9. A beautiful mystery with feathers and wing and a cheerful little face.
    I know how much seeing him must delight you. It would me.

  10. Your visitor appears to be a Monk Parakeet. There are quite a lot of them living in the Austin area. In fact, there are feral populations of the birds established in many parts of the country.


  11. That's a pied budgie.. definitely NOT a monk parakeet.

    BTW .. I'm just finding your blog and I LOVE it. We are in the East Texas Piney woods and we "get away" to the Hill Country! It's one of our favorite places to visit..

  12. I am happy picturing you and Denny enjoying a libation and watching the birds.

    I love you two. Enjoy the holiday weekend.


  13. I've heard some budgies are able to survive and even breed. Maybe he will be one of them.

  14. Oh you are too funny! And thanks for the link to my blog .. it's brand new and I'm still tweakin' it! I'm soooo addicted to yours and will take a while to read all the archives ... ~deb

  15. We are overrun with Quaker Parrots here. Every day at around 5:00PM they squawk in formation over my house headed to wherever Quaker Parrots head to.


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