Above: a breeding pair of African grey parrots (example pictured) were stolen from Kim Hawkins’ set-up, but were returned home safe just four days later © Shutterstock.com/Ivana P. Nikolic

 

A DISTRAUGHT FANCIER who had his breeding pair of African grey parrots stolen was relieved to have the birds returned home safe just four days later.

Mr Kim Hawkins, 55, from Midsomer Norton in Somerset, discovered his birds had been taken in the early hours of May 26. The thief broke into the carport on the side of his house, took tools and gained entry to his set-up through his garage door.

Mr Hawkins, an experienced fancier who is a member of the Parrot Society, explained: “The intruder spotted an opportunity for a transporting cage; he removed my Pekin bantam that was broody on eggs out of her cage and put her and her eggs in another cage. He then made off with the Pekin’s cage and my two greys.”

The parrots, which Mr Hawkins has had for five years, are a breeding pair and had been in a nest-box at the time of the theft. He added: “I nearly cried! Five years I’ve been working on them; when I bought the cock bird he was in a terrible state and had no feathers on him at all. The birds were tame, but it would have been a hell of a struggle to catch them.”

There was no damage to the carport or garage and so Mr Hawkins believes that the intruder “knew what he was coming for.”

The thief was caught on a neighbour’s security camera using a drill taken from Mr Hawkins’ carport to try to break into a van and also hotwire a car on the same street. This has been reported to the police.

However, in a fantastic turn of fate, both birds were recovered locally on May 30. As the parrots were not seen on the CCTV footage, Mr Hawkins believes the birds escaped the intruder during the struggle to catch them in the cage.

The African greys have now been returned to an overjoyed Mr Hawkins and he has ordered extra security. The intruder is still at large.

 

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