Wales

Goat sets 30 exotic birds loose in Cardigan with headbutt

Goat and budgie Image copyright Vickie Richards-Barton
Image caption Udupi the goat was trying to get some bird seed when he broke the lock on the aviary door

A pet goat set more than 30 exotic birds loose when it headbutted their aviary door open.

Vicky Richards-Barton found more than half of her cockatiels and budgies gone and the aviary door lock broken on Wednesday - suspecting her goat Udupi.

Eight birds have returned home, but at least two dozen are still on the loose in Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire.

Ms Barton-Richards guessed Udupi broke through the lock in an attempt to treat himself to some bird feed.

Image copyright Vickie Richards-Barton
Image caption More than 30 birds, including budgies and cockatiels, escaped

She said she fed her birds at about 20:00 BST before going out for a walk with her husband. By the time she returned two hours later, the birds had gone.

"I was feeding the birds and one of my goats came in behind me into the aviary and decided to eat some of the bird seed," Ms Barton-Richards said.

"I imagine he headbutted the clip, which was in two pieces, and the bolt was open."

Image copyright Vickie Richards-Barton
Image caption Eight birds, including these cockatiels, have returned home

Ms Barton-Richards estimates she has about 50 birds, with more than 30 flying away after the door was broken.

She has been helped by a friend, who runs a pet shop, handing out millet to people in an attempt to entice the birds into gardens, while some flew back on their own.

But one man got more than he bargained for when rescuing one of the birds.

"One bird was found in St Dogmaels, about three miles away, and she bit the man really, really hard. She was our matriarch so we're pleased to have her back," she added.

She says the birds recognise her clothes and voice, and hopes as many as possible can be recovered, but worries predators such as Sparrowhawks and Red Kites may catch some.

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