This story, reprinted here from the BBC without permission, broke my heart the first time I read it, and I've thought about it so much since that I went back to the story to see if there had been any kind of an update. It doesn't look as if there has been. Imagine having a companion for 54 years taken away like this. I hope this old sailor gets his pal back. I'd buy the thieves another bird if they'd just give this one back. Standing offer. Does anyone out there in blogland have any more on this ?
Cockatoo, 54, stolen during raid
Cocky might have been at sea for years, but he does not swear
A 54-year-old cockatoo called Cocky has been stolen from his owner who bought him as a chick from a market. Former sailor Leslie Proctor, 86, said he bought Cocky, thought to be worth £1,000, back with him on one of his last voyages and wanted him returned.
The lively cockatoo, which can squawk its name, and say "ta-ta" had been asleep at Mr Proctor's home in Blaydon when he was snatched on Tuesday night.
Police said Cocky might have been stolen to order.
Mr Proctor said Cocky had "quite a temper" and was "a handful". The former Merchant Navy sailor who was at sea for 22 years, bought the bird as a chick from Paddy's Market in Sydney, Australia. He said: "I brought Cocky back with me on one of my last voyages and he's been with me ever since. He's good company and I'd very much like him returned to me."
Despite the bird's seafaring ways, he was never taught to swear. Instead, the great sulphur-crested cockatoo can say his name, "Cocky Proctor", "cup of tea", "good night" and "ta-ta".
Pc Anthony Holliday feared Cocky might have been stolen to order. He said: "The thief or thieves seem to have known what they were after. After getting into the house they went straight for the bird cage, removed the padlock, and stole the bird." A police spokesman confirmed it was the only thing that was stolen in the burglary.
Ah, Mr. Proctor, my heart aches for you and your little friend. May he find his way to you again soon.