Meet Bella, a Kereru (NZ Wood Pigeon)
Bella was found on the ground in a local Olive Grove. She was underweight, had a toxic system and yeast overgrowth.
Bella was very ill and had reverted to dependent ‘baby chick like’ behaviour. It is funny but strange to see a ‘fully grown’ Kereru behaving like a chick, chirping and flapping its wings to be fed.
As Bella recovered and was self-feeding it was the peas she would scoff down first.
Later we would find her either sulking or performing over the choice of food left; with not a pea in sight.
For Bella it was peas, peas and more peas! She refused to eat any other food.
Once our veterinarian Bryan Gartrell had completed tests and declared Bella ready for rehabilitation she was moved to the aviary so she could put on a little more weight and regain her strength before release.
Not long after being introduced to the aviary two Kereru began calling to her from the trees nearby.
After a week of Bella going crazy and wanting to join the free Kereru we decided that she was well enough for a soft release. A soft release means that we support her with food until she can look after herself.
We were so worried as it seemed like the other Kereru were bullying her and she was getting exhausted. After a few days she started flying back at the one that was harassing her most.
Next day; there was Bella and her new friend happily sitting side by side on a branch. Her new boyfriend looks bemused when she goes down to eat her peas. I would love to know what he’s thinking of her strange behaviour.