Quoth the Raven
By Geri Tillett
This summer a nice couple brought a Chihuahuan raven to me. He appeared in their yard and made himself comfortable sitting on the man's shoulder. Then the bird flew over to where two painters were busily painting the couple's home and perch on their shoulders supervising the painting procedure. While this was very entertaining to everyone who watched, it was clear this bird was someone's pet. He was obviously hand raised from a very young age. It was decided to call a wildlife rehabilitator for assistance in caring for this visitor.
I was delighted to receive such a friendly bird. I gave him a private room (my small aviary) of his very own and spent about two weeks feeding and interacting with him. I introduced him to all of my volunteers and visitors who were very impressed with this friendly, loving creature! He liked to sit on my back and rearrange my hair, sometimes hopping right on top of my head with both feet. He also liked to be hand fed tidbits of fruit, chicken and ground round. He loved cherries, too. One day after he arrived, he accidentally escaped from the aviary and flew off. I alerted Animal Control and the next morning they got a call from an apartment complex two blocks away about a big black bird that was following everyone up and down the stairs.
He was returned promptly and I began calling zoos in New Mexico to see if they would like to have this bird for an 'education bird' since he could not be released to the wild. Fortunately the Roswell Zoo had room for him and he was transported to their facility. The zoo director called me several days later with the news that everyone at the zoo had fallen in love with this new member and he started his career educating people at the Bitter Lake Wildlife Refuge the next weekend. I was informed that they named him “Quote.”
Geri Tillett runs Wild Bird Sanctuary in Las Cruces, New Mexico