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A Tribute to BoBo

October 17, 2009

I remember searching for “cockatoos” on the Internet several years ago, and the search pulled up a YouTube video, “BoBo.”  The video left me speechless, and I’ve never forgotten it.  I’ve contacted the owner of  “Second Chance Birds,” and received permission to post some of  BoBo’s past.  BoBo’s life and seeming death has touch so many.  Please see “Arise, and be Free” page of this blog, dedicated, as is this post, to BoBo’s spirit which now flies free in the forest of Seram.

Whenever you think about purchasing a bird, think first about BoBo.  There are parrots who are looking for a home, a second chance.  Can you help?


Bo Bo, November 2005, found in a pet store’s storage room
“Unseen they suffer, unheard they cry, in agony they linger, in loneliness they die.”



The Pet Store’s Back Room

 Was it fate meant to be or merely by chance

When the back room door opened she caught just a glance?

The pink and white feathers gave her the clue

The pet store back room hid a Moluccan Cockatoo.

All manners aside, she pushed herself in

To meet the dear parrot held captive therein.

The back room was cluttered, gloomy and dark.

The eyes of its prisoner held not a spark.

The bird sat in silence and didn’t look well.

The cage bottom filled with feces and shells.

She gently reached in. Not a bite or a lurch.

A drop of thick puss fell from its chest to its perch.

She slowly reached toward him so as not to fright.

His reaction was hopeful. His eyes filled with light.

Someone had loved him, for kindness he’s known

That he must have remembered from a long time ago.

Weak with his illness and lacking good care,

She vowed in her heart to free him from there.

Holding back tears and hiding her rage

She promised him soon, he’d be gone from this cage.

She asked of his story and questioned his plight.

She was told, “He is taken, and the bird is alright.”

They didn’t seem worried, nor recognized

That without intervention this poor bird would die.

She offered to take the bird to her vet.

Her offer refused, she left with regret.

Nothing else did she think of. She reached out on-line

To distant friends who loved birds and valued their lives.

All manner of rescue, some legal, some not,

Were explored ’til they fashioned a daring rescue plot.

To the counter they walked, lost poster in hand,

Strangers just looking for their lost feathered friend.

With a tale that tricked these jailers of doom,

He was freed from his languish in the pet store’s back room.

To the vet he was whisked, wasting no time.

Examined and tested, the bird was not fine.

That he needed attention was no longer in doubt.

He had mites. He had lice. Parasites inside and out.

A wound at his breastbone that festered and bled

Would require massive surgery which might leave him dead.

Denying no service and no money spared

He’d get what he needed ’til he was repaired.

Home she did take him to build up his strength

To endure the long rehab he’d need at great length.

He talked up a streak, even told her his name,

But to protect his identity I think I’ll refrain.

She intended to foster and give him a start

But this gentle old soul pulled the strings of her heart.

A hint of his past was revealing in his crying,

Repeating the phrase, “Mommy is dying.”

Could it be someone loved him and left him alone

Because he outlived his first happy home?

To the meds and the caring he responded so fast

You’d never know by his actions of his sad recent past.

He’d dance and he’d play, with the heart of a ‘too.

The surgery, extensive, he quickly pulled through.

Everything that he needed she made sure he’d get.

His angel of mercy was quickly in debt.

As he healed and he mended, his fame quickly spread

To bird loving people on the World Wide Web.

They gathered together, as bird people do,

Sent donations, held raffles, to help pay what was due.

Though bandaged and collared, he did more than survive.

Prayers from all over the world helped him to thrive.

His future looked bright and pain he’d no longer know.

Then test results returned with an unfair, dire blow.

This bird that was thought not needing a vet

Was diagnosed with bone cancer, the worst cancer yet.

With a future uncertain and a prognoses grim

His friends have all vowed not to give in.

His medical expenses all would be met.

Anything needed this cockatoo would get.

For all of his future, one thing is sure:

Abuse and neglect he will no longer endure.

To the reader: please know though the names are withheld

Every word here is true of the story I tell.

Now I will leave you with this single thought:

Look carefully upon that parrot you bought.

Did you know they can live more than a decade or two?

Close to a century some parrots do.

What’s going to happen to your feathered friend

If your life should come to an untimely end?

Have you made arraignments through money and wills

Guaranteeing your pet doesn’t fall on these ills?

Or are you leaving their future to chance?

For they might not be saved by an angel’s quick glance.

You may be providing an ultimate doom

of suffering and dying in a pet store’s back room.

Written by:

Peggy Hentz in honor of Bo’s rescue

Please see Arise, and Fly Free which is the story about BoBo 
All images, poetry, and video on this blog relating to BoBo, and Second Chance Birds, are displayed with the permission of Second Chance Birds.  Thank you, Sunny!
3 Comments leave one →
  1. dolores witney permalink
    July 27, 2010 9:53 pm

    I, too, am old – 77 in August 2010. I have a ysa (Yellow-shouldered Amazon) who is only 3 yrs old. The first thing I did was to look for some one that would take him and love him as I do when I die. My dream is to see him grow in to adulthood the next 20 years, but truth is I know I won’t see it – but my son will. He’s bonding with Mango now. He takes him out for a day with him and loves him as I do. After my son, his son will take him. Some thought how silly – it’s only a bird. But the truth is he’s a life worth fighting for, as yours and mine are.

    Once you make a bird a pet, they can’t be let go, as they they don’t know how to fend for themselves. It is our responsibility to see they are loved and housed as they are used to. So, bird owners – we don’t know how long we’re going to be here. So give your bird the chance of a full life with someone that cares as you do after you are gone. Don’t let another BoBo happen – prepare for the unexpected. Mango is as free as I can let him be – he is only caged at night.

    • July 28, 2010 1:35 am

      Dolores: Thank you so very much for your comment. You speak the truth. So many people do not realize the longetivity of parrots, nor their temperment. They can live for possibly 90+ years. Parrots are smart, sensitive, and require socialization. And they poop, fling food, sometimes bite, and scream. Owning a parrot (or a parrot owning you) is a true committment. Unfortunately, parrot rescue organizations, which are overflowing and can now be found in EVERY state, indicate that a large percentage of people that purchase parrots do not do their research. People also should consider parrot adoption versus purchasing from a breeder. Just my thoughts.


  1. Trying to prevent a Bird Store Protest - Avian Avenue Parrot & Other Birds Message Board

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