As you may have noticed on yesterday’s blog, Rufus the Chinese crested mynah became very ill. He wasn’t flying or even moving his wings; he seemed very depressed and fell over quite a lot (even though he had one club foot, this did not usually happen). I picked him up and took him into a small hospital cage with a blanket and some perches whilst Graham made an appointment with the vet. He ate very well, taking mealworms and banana from his hand, but also ate some soft-bill mix from his bowl.
When we got to the vets (after Rufus made friends with a Beagle), he had a quick check over, and it was discovered that he had virtually no muscle on his keel, and thus he could not fly. As his appetite was still strong, this suggested something was seriously wrong with him. We could have pumped him full of antibiotics, but it appeared that he had a serious wasting disease, and was unlikely to recover, so Graham, the vet and I all thought that it was best to put him down.
He has been buried in the garden. Rufus was very popular with visitors to the CFZ; I remember at the Weird Weekend Dr Darren Naish feeding him mealworms just to see him gape to open his fingers (starlings and mynahs both gape to open small cracks to get at food) and getting very exited when Rufus did so!
It’s the tragic loss of a great character, and he will be very much missed by everyone at the CFZ.