A female blue and white budgie perches on a small branch on the edge of a bush.

The Voice of a Budgie

The Voice of a Budgie

There's no mistaking the voice of a parakeet.

A staccato conversation inside their own head. Happy parakeets and budgies crackle chortle with a snap nod of a serious mind. Ending a crackle on a sharp note. A warning to the listener to pay attention. They have important facts to share.

We've a healthy membership count of blue jays.

They share our trees with our neighbor's trees creating foraging zones, nap zones, complaining zones, arguing zones, territorial zones, no crow zones, no grackle zones, no squirrel zones, no mockingbird zones, and nest zones. All are busy forcing compliance within these zones. Three fledgling jays have left the nest, arriving at a stage of disbelief. Their parents have no interest in feeding them. They perch on fence top, tree branch, palm leaf, or roof line complaining and begging. Staging fantastic one scene plays of miserable deaths and sufferings. Parents fly in with sharp calls telling them to grow up. The fledglings harrumph and fly off, miserably.

They amuse me in all their character flaws. I amuse them with free food twice a day. Food they approach, stand near to call a parent in, then fall on their backs unable to feed themselves a morsel. Death's cold hand reaches out to snatch them. They jump up furiously calling in defense. Their parents are no longer paying attention. They're off on vacation. In another tree. Fledglings harrumph to each other and eat.

I heard a budgie call, in sharp staccato.

I have a fantasy where I am one of the lucky few who's shoulder becomes a safe space to a lost bird. They land alone, hungry, confused, and needing help. I imagine the parakeet I hear near, begging for my intervention and smothering. It's carrying on quite a bit. Not in distress, but happily ending in sharp notes, to start a new cascade of crackle.

You'd think I could spot him or her. They are crayon colored and bright. The trees are bruised greens belonging to plants forced to live in the Florida sun. Rooted in sand, limestone, and soils that are not soil at all. Grit really. Grit rejected from the desserts of Africa. Crayon colors pop out of such greens. I only spy a voice with my ears. There isn't another bird who cyphers like a parakeet.

Unless it's a blue jay who's spent some time in the company of a parakeet you don't know. Somehow in all those moments of near death by starvation one of our fledgling blue jays met a parakeet. A budgie that was not near-death starving. A sharp parakeet voice from a blue jay's soft bill amuses me.

Kathy LaFollett is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

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