Pandemonium of parrots adds color to town
Post Independent staff
GLENWOOD SPRINGS — A half-dozen Sun Conure parrots, which originate in Brazil, are living the high-altitude desert life in south Glenwood Springs, thanks to parrot aficionados Marc and DeDe Isgrig, who have been living and working with this “pandemonium of parrots” for a couple of years.
The Isgrigs live in the southern part of town (they didn’t want their location pinpointed out of concern for the birds’ safety), and own the Luxe Nest business on Grand Avenue. They had owned parakeets in the past, according to Marc, but when they felt the need to repopulate their home with feathered friends they wanted to try a different breed of bird.
He bought his first Sun Conures a couple of years ago at Petco, he said, and quickly realized that the birds could get along fine in the outdoors during the warm months.
“They live in my house,” Marc Isgrig told the Post Independent recently, adding that they like to roam around the neighborhood during the warm days but move indoors at night and in the winter months.
The birds have become a popular item in the neighborhood, Isgrig said, noting, “I think everybody likes them.”
In fact, it was a photo by Glenwood Springs resident Lee Barger, sent to the Post Independent recently, that resulted in this story.
In his note, Barger wrote, the birds have been spotted in several neighborhoods around town, sometimes feeding in apple trees.
Once the birds got established, Isgrig continued, it wasn’t long before a pair mated and produced several eggs, out of which hatched two young birds that swelled the pandemonium (that’s what a grouping of parrots are called) to six.
Because the two parents were relatively inexperienced in how to deal with chicks, Isgrig decided to give them a hand.
“I decided to help them so they could grow properly,” he explained, and his ministrations clearly were successful, as the entire group now forages on its own.
When inside, Isgrig said, the birds congregate in a small space they have created for themselves in the kitchen, and have won the interest and even friendship of the Isgrig’s three sons, aged 11, 12 and 14.
“They all get along well with the birds,” Isgrig said.
He said one issue they have not had to deal with is how to treat the birds if they get sick.
“We’ve been fortunate nothing like that’s ever happened,” he noted.
Aside from being colorful additions to the neighborhood, Isgrig said, the birds have learned to ride in the car when the family takes off to vacation at a cabin they have elsewhere in Colorado.
Several of the birds, he said, will perch on his shoulders as he drives, no doubt causing comment in cars they pass on the road.
And, he said, “They can hear my truck coming,” so that when he is driving home from work, if the birds are frolicking along his route they will follow him home for supper.
He said he occasionally worries about the birds’ ability to survive in this climate, “But birds become acclimated easily,” and his pandemonium appears to be thriving.
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Over 75,000 hikers visited Hanging Lake during this year’s peak season. Via signage, the city hopes to point more of those hikers also in the direction of downtown Glenwood Springs.