For any use of my photos, please contact me at monika.wieland (at) gmail (dot) com

Friday, June 5, 2009

Meet the Pets

We got a new pet last weekend, and when I decided to share some photos of her I realized I've never mentioned my other pet, either. So this is the "Meet the Pets" post.

This is Captain, a kakariki, a type of small parrot native to New Zealand. I've had him for about 10 years and got him as a baby, so young that we still had to hand feed him from a bottle for the first little while we had him. He used to be a very personable bird, who would come out of the cage, sit on your hand, and run around on the floor. Then he reached sexual maturity, which results in an extreme mood alteration in many male birds, and Captain was no exception. He is now quite the biter and doesn't like to be handled. Still, he's very amusing, constantly active, and occasionally speaks his version of the phrases "Hello there", "Good morning", and "Good boy"....the last of which he picked up while staying at a dog groomer's while my family was on an extended vacation.


The newest addition to the family is a one year old chinchilla we adopted last weekend. With Captain not being very hand friendly, it was time to add a furrier companion. Chinchillas are native to the Andes mountain range in South America, and as such prefer cooler temperatures. Wouldn't you know it, as soon as we bring her home, we get temperatures in the 80s for a week. She seems to be doing okay, though, and the cool breeze we get through the open doors and windows down here on the water seems to help.


Since they are native to montane habitat, they've developed a unique behavior of bathing in volcanic dust instead of water. It helps to keep their fur soft and in good condition, and is something you have to provide for them at least a few times a week to keep a chinchilla healthy and looking good. Here is our little pet in her "chinchilla bath house"...I never thought I would be buying one of those!


There is a disagreement as to what to name her, so as of now she has not officially been named. I have a feeling the result of the Stanley Cup Playoffs might be the deciding factor, as a wager has been placed as to who will win the series, and the winner may just get naming rights. So, go Penguins!

6 comments:

Michele said...

Captain is BEAUTIFUL and your new addition is ADORABLE. Love the last photo. Such a sweet disposition... Good luck with the name and look forward to hearing what it is...

Warren Baker said...

Nice to meet the family Monika! With a parrot called captain the chinchilla should be called 'Sarge' !

julie said...

what a cute chinchilla, monika! i think i told you that i have two, and one is a cute young male. maybe when yours is old enough to "date", we can introduce them! :) hope you're having fun with her!

Heather said...

Thanks for introducing us to your pets. The chinchilla is pretty darn cute!
So about this bath-house she has... do you have to specifically provide volcanic dust for her to bathe in, or will any ol' dirt do the job? What a fascinating creature.

Monika said...

The chinchilla is a cutie, but geez, is she ever mischievous! We really have to watch her with an eagle eye when she's out, as she will get into anything and everything you don't want her to. We enclose off part of a room for her, but she chews on baseboard, climbs into the smallest of holes, and will climb on your shoulder and use that to climb onto something higher if she can!

We were trying to think of a good name to go with "Captain" and the best option came courtesy of my boyfriend who suggested "Morgan". It's not one of the finalists though, and the debate is still on. We each have our own preferred name that the other person doesn't really like, so we're trying to come up with a mutually agreeable alternative.

She shouldn't bathe in just any kind of dirt or sand, it has to be a special kind of dust you buy at a pet store. The kind we bought was just like volcanic ash, and the sample that came with the bath house was finely ground pumice.

Heather said...

Have you guys missed the obvious companion name to Captain: Tenille?! I know it's cliche, but....