SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - A Wilmington Island family on the hunt for their missing big African Gray parrot named Martin thought they had finally found their beloved pet Tuesday night after a Facebook post on WTOC Don Logana's Facebook page.
The hunt may have ended in a false alarm. Another family who is missing the exact type of bird also responded. However, both families still are parrot-less.
"We were on my back patio and kept hearing cell phone ringing," Sue Aaron told WTOC. It was no cell phone. "I look up in the tree in the back yard and there is a big grey African parrot acting like a cell phone," Aaron said. "I figured it's got to be someone's pet so I'll post it on Don's wall so it will get out there if someone lost a bird, so that's what I did. Everybody follows his WTOC page."
A month ago, the McGuiness family was searching for Martin. He belongs to 14-year-old Michael McGuiness. Within a few minutes of the "MISSING PARROT" ALERT post on the WTOC Don Logana page - and 130 shares 13,000 views later - the post comments section blew up and Trish McGuiness was calling for Sue Aaron's phone number.
"A bunch a bunch of folks, probably about 30 or more, saw the post about the gray African parrot by St. Joseph's Hospital, and then we got more people saying they also saw one on Wilmington Island," McGuiness said. In a twist, another family, just around corner, also lost an African Gray parrot a few days earlier.
"That blew my mind. On Wilmington and a lady the day before yesterday right down the street," Aaron said. Both families went to see the bird that night, but the parrot never came down from the tree. They all came back Wednesday morning and Michael tried talking to the parrot. "He whistled and made the phone noise, but that was about it. Not that much," he said. The other owner came back on her lunch break and got a whole other reacton and another sign it wasn't the McGuiness's parrot.
"It went ballistic when she talked to it. He flapped it wings and was running up and down the branch like a squirrel and was excited and trying to find a way down," Michael McGuiness said. "He also had a band around it's ankle from what we could see," Trish McGuiness said. "Martin doesn't have a band. We aren't a hundred percent sure, so there is still a little hope but we hope he does find his way home, and we hope another parrot is out there who is ours." There is one more problem. After everyone left, the parrot, flew from the tree, back towards where his presumed owner lives. Sue hopes it's near a cell tower where it was spotted a day earlier, but no sign the rest of the afternoon.
"Yes, he flew right over our heads that way. I hope he's headed back home after realizing it was his owner who had just left to go back to work," she said. "He was a funny bird, I'll give him that."
If you spot a big African Gray parrot in the area of St. Joseph's/Candler Hospital or on Wilmington Island do not try to catch it. Call WTOC or contact Don Logana on Facebook.