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Community bands together to rescue green-winged macaw parrot which escaped from Sway home

A COLOURFUL pet parrot which escaped and flew around Lymington has been reunited with its owner after a community effort to catch him.

The green-winged macaw was reported around the town by several people in various spots including at the sea wall.

But attempts to catch the bird proved fruitless as every time anyone approached, the parrot flew away.

Carla Whitbread with the escaped parrot
Carla Whitbread with the escaped parrot

Carla Whitbread spotted it on a road leading to the bottom of Hurst View campsite in Lymington. She said: “I thought I was seeing things at first.

“It was absolutely beautiful, so colourful and really big. Its colour was so vibrant,

"It actually started to follow me and tried to approach me. It seemed quite hungry, and I think the parrot was looking for food from me.

"I didn’t know what to do so I called a friend to come and see if he could catch it.”

Her friend was Peter Durnell, a senior ranger for Hampshire County Council, who tried to entice the bird to him wearing a pair of gloves to protect against its sharp talons.

But the attempt to catch the parrot ended in failure, and Carla joked: “The parrot didn’t like him as much as it did me, so he flew off.

Peter Durnell trying to catch the parrot
Peter Durnell trying to catch the parrot

"I had taken a few photos of it, so I posted them on social media to see if anyone recognised the parrot.”

A woman replied identifying it as a green-winged macaw which belonged to her aunt who lived on a farm in Sway.

She said it had gone missing over the weekend during a bout of bad weather.

She said her aunt was “very upset” the bird had gone missing, saying that its mate was sitting on eggs in a nest at the farm “calling” for it to come back.

One man said he had come across the missing bird while cycling from Keyhaven to Lymington yacht club.

Posting photos of the parrot online, he said: “Not sure if anyone has lost a parrot but I’ve just spotted this little guy down at the sea wall in Lymington.

"As I tried to pick him up, he flew away so doesn’t seem injured but was sat at the sea wall for quite some time.

“He flew off towards Lymingon yacht club just in case anyone is looking for him.”

The parrot was finally caught after it turned up at a horse livery yard in Longdown, Marchwood, where staff managed to attract it by feeding it peanuts.

After being returned to its owner, her grateful niece posted a thank you on social media: “Thank you to everybody for keeping eyes out for the green-winged macaw. It has been collected and is back home.”

Known as a gentle giant, the green-winged macaw is one of the largest species of parrots. It can measure up to 35 inches from its head to its tail and weigh up to three-and-a-half pounds.

Native to South America, it has a “formidable” beak but is not known for biting and is said to be one of the friendliest parrots.

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