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August 2019 Mayor of the Avenue... Matto

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expressmailtome

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Matthew
Our "Mayor of the Avenue" award is presented to a member who exhibits the qualities that distinguish them to be an upstanding credit to the Avenue, a loving, informed, conscientious and caring bird parront and an all around good neighbor.

I am happy to announce that Matto is August's Mayor of the Month.
I enjoyed reading your interview, and am sure that everyone else will as well!

1. What kind of birds do you have (age, species and names)?


I have a 2 year old female Black Headed Caique named M&M, a 3 year old male Crimson Bellied Conure named Feygele and several linnies: Cheeky (female, 1), Splayed-ey (male, 1), Barry (male, 4 months), and Creamy (female, 1). I also breed linnies.


2. What got you interested in birds?


I can't remember, but when I was 11 I became obsessed with parakeets.


3. What have your birds brought to your life?


Too much to list. All the good emotions.


4. What have you learned from sharing your life with your birds?


I've learned patience and respect, mostly. I remember being 11 or 12 and crying out of frustration when a bird didn't like me or was resistant to training. Now I understand that all relationships take time, and that you must respect the boundaries of others.


5. What's one birdie memory that will stay with you forever?


The first time I went to a bird store. I had been researching birds on the internet for months but still had barely seen any in person. I finally convinced my parents to take me to a now-defunct bird store called Animal Exchange in Rockville. I didn't get a bird for another few months, but I just enjoyed seeing and hearing all of them. It was magic.


6. Where is your birds main living area?


Most of them live in our dining room. When they come out they usually either play on top of their cages, on us, or on the play stand in the living room. I also have two pairs of linnie breeders in a separate room. The linnies in the dining room like to visit them every few days.


7. Did you change things in your home to accommodate your birds and if so what kinds of things did you change?


I've only lived here for a couple of years, so I always had my birds in mind.


8. Are you involved in any kind of bird related group or activities?


I am a member of the Lineolated Parakeet Society, but I'm not very active.


9. What is the one luxury item you would love to have for your bird(s)?


A bigger house. Or a walk-in aviary, but the latter would certainly necessitate the former.


10. Is there any bird that you dream of owning and if so why?


An African Grey. I've always felt a kinship with them. I want one eventually, but I quite frankly need to wait until I have a bigger place and more money.


11. Describe a typical day with you at home with your birds.


Wake up, say good morning to the birds. Uncover the birds that we cover at night. Put M&M on her stand and give her some treats. Change everyone's food and water. Clean what needs cleaning. If the nest boxes are up, check in on them. Make them some chop. Let out the linnies to fly around. Play with M&M. Once the linnies are away, take out Feygele to play with. If we're home all day, most of the birds get a couple hours out, but M&M is rarely in her cage. Her stand has water, pellets, and treats. Often my girlfriend will occupy M&M while I occupy Feygele. At night, put them away and let them roost a while before covering them. I always wish Feygele a good night in Yiddish (for some reason I usually speak Yiddish with Feygele and English with M&M) and kiss M&M through her cover. They both get very excited about these night time rituals and upset if they are skipped.


12. What have you learned about owning birds that you would like to share?

Go slow, don't be dismayed if you aren't immediately BFFs. Talking to them makes a huge difference. Just sit next to their cage and talk to them. When it comes to play time, it's quality not quantity that counts. They like to have play stands in different rooms. Don't underestimate the power of verbal praise.


13. If you knew then what you know now about birds, what would you do differently?


Lots. I would have been more patient, less stressed. I also may not have gotten birds (particularly my parrotlet) knowing that I would have to leave them during college. My parakeets had a big flight cage and each other, but my parrotlet was all alone and everyone else in the house was too afraid of her to take her out.


14. What other hobbies do you have?


I'm interested in language. I learned Yiddish in college and continue to read Yiddish papers and literature and keep in touch with friends from that world. Some of whom have birds, BTW. I majored in History in college and am a huge history nerd. I often listen to History podcasts while I work. I minored in lit and enjoy reading. I had a side business for a while selling vegetarian Israeli food like hummus, tahini, schug, sabich and limonana at the farmer's market but left it to focus on my bird toy business. I still enjoy cooking at home. I grew up engrossed in the punk rock world and still primarily listen to that genre, though I'm not as active in "the scene" as I once was. I've been vegetarian since I was 16.


15. Anything else you would like to share?


I just want to thank Avian Avenue. When I started my shop, this was the first place I advertised and the members were just so supportive and forgiving of rookie mistakes. I credit this forum with getting my shop off the ground. After about a year and a half of doing the shop out of my tiny apartment while still working full-time at a deli, BeMore Birds is now my full-time job, and I do it out of an office/workspace that is totally bird-free. I love it. I particularly love helping people with their bird's problems and the pictures they send me of their birds enjoying themselves on their stand.
 

Zara

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Congratulations @Matto :starshower:

I enjoyed reading about you and your birds ❤
 

rockoko

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:congrats5:
 

sunnysmom

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Congratulations! :)
 

Cat The Great

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:congrats5: I enjoyed reading about you and your birds Matto. :)
 

Tiel Feathers

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:congrats5:
 

JoJo&Loki

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Congrats Mayor Matto! :congrats3:

I enjoyed reading about your different relationships with your birds, and your cute nighttime routine.
 

Lady Jane

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Very interesting writeup. Congrats!
 

Hawk12237

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Enjoyed your interview answers...congradulations.
 

Shezbug

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Yay :congratsbig:

I really enjoyed reading your interview and learning more about you and all your birds :)
 

Dona

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Congrats Matt! I enjoyed your interview and am grateful you became interested in birds! You are part of our daily routine! Gigi loves her massive play gym!
 

CrazyBirdChick

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:congrats5: Matto!

I really enjoyed reading more about your birds. The linnies have such cute names! I also thought it was so cute that you speak Yiddish to Feygele but not to M&M :)

Also big congrats on making BeMore Birds your full time job! You've made alot of birds very happy :yourock:
 
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