BEVERLY — They thought it might be PeeWee, the lost parrot. But it turned out to be a false alarm.
A resident on Middlebury Lane called police at 11:53 a.m. Saturday after spotting a parrot in a tree. Police then contacted Bonnie Michalowski, thinking the exotic bird might be PeeWee, a cherry-headed conure that escaped from his Hillside Avenue home on Aug. 5.
Michalowski raced to the Centerville home late Saturday morning, but the bird had already flown away. A man at the home had taken a picture of the bird with his cellphone. Unfortunately, it wasn’t PeeWee.
“It was a large Amazon parrot with a yellow head and green body,” Michalowski said. “PeeWee is smaller and has a red head and green body.”
Michalowski and her husband, Don Talbot, have put up posters around Ryal Side, contacted police and taken out an ad in the newspaper. Michalowski took a day off from work to look for him.
The family is getting all sorts of reports of lost birds since taking out the newspaper advertisement and from the subsequent press.
“I guess I am not the only one,” she said.
The couple has had PeeWee for 19 years, longer than they’ve had their 12-year-old daughter, Merrick.
Cherry-headed conures like PeeWee are native to Ecuador and Peru and have green feathers with a splash of red on their faces and heads.
PeeWee can utter a few words and phrases, including “Hello,” “Come on up,” “Gimme a kiss” and “Love you,” Michalowski said. He also makes a kissing noise when he’s happy and can say “Pyewackett” and “Boobus,” the names of the family’s two deceased cats.
There have been reported sightings of the beloved bird, but no luck in catching him.
“That’s the problem,” Michalowski said. “By the time I get a reported sighting and get there, he has already flown off.”
The last visual sighting of PeeWee was two weeks ago by a man on Greene Street. On Aug. 25, the same man reported hearing the bird at 3 a.m.
The man said the bird made a loud noise and flew quickly through the trees and bushes.
“I’ve been going there every night at dusk with our other parrot, Maya, hoping that he’ll hear us and come down,” Michalowski said.
PeeWee apparently got loose when he bumped into the screen door while flying around the room.
The door popped open, and PeeWee, who hadn’t been outdoors since Talbot bought him at Liberty Tree Mall in 1994, flew away. But the search continues.
“I have hope,” Michalowski said last night.
Michalowski and Talbot are offering a reward for anyone who finds PeeWee. They can be reached at 508-932-4088 or 978-473-6557.
Staff writer Jonathan Phelps can be reached at 978-338-2527 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at JPhelps_SN.