THIS friendly parrot proved he was the real McCoy when he joined builders for a packet of crisps.
The workers on the Stubbington site got a surprise when the bird interrupted their afternoon to have a chat and eat some snacks.
Martin Fuge is the project manager for C&L Management. He was at his building site in Titchfield Road when the parrot flew down from a nearby tree.
The builders offered the African grey a packet of McCoy’s crisps which he tucked into.
They then put the bird in a box and safely took it down to the Stubbington Ark, the nearest RSPCA branch.
Martin said: ‘It flew into a tree and one of the lads went up and was saying hello and it was talking back.
‘One of the lads had a packet of crisps and we started feeding it.
‘We tried catching it but it flew off. It came back about half an hour later.
‘We caught it and put it in a box and took it to the Ark.’
Martin said it was a very unusual situation to be in.
‘It’s strange to see a parrot anywhere in England,’ he said.
‘It was so friendly. It was interested in us.’
Staff at the Stubbington Ark contacted Birdline Parrot Rescue, which collected the parrot.
It is now at a temporary home in Brighton, waiting to be claimed by its owner. It is thought to have escaped and flown off.
Branch manager at the Ark Paul Longcollins said: ‘It’s not as unusual as you think. Parrots can be quite tame. They aren’t necessarily frightened of humans, which is why the people were able to deal with it the way that they did.
‘This sends a message out to people to say don’t just stick your parrot in a cage, interact with them.’
And Mr Longcollins said contacting Birdline Parrot Rescue was the best thing to do.
‘We don’t necessarily have the expertise to deal with every single animal but we do have the contacts to work with other agencies to make sure that we can get an animal re-homed by a specialist organisation,’ he added.
Doddie Kent, rescue manager for Birdline Parrot Rescue, said: ‘It was an emergency pick-up. We keep the bird for about three weeks to give the owners the chance to come forward.’
Although the parrot is wearing a ring, it’s not microchipped which means it can only be traced back to its place of birth and not where it lives now.
The owner is encouraged to call Birdline on 0845 643 1785. They must have proof of ownership.