Tamworth's best-known feathered resident Busbee the macaw has died aged 45.
A familiar face to shoppers in Tamworth throughout the 1970s and 1980s, Busbee is best known for his many years as the star attraction at the House of Gillway pet shop in the former Gungate Precinct.
The blue and gold parrot was adopted by Les Turner of Sutton Road, Mile Oak and spent the last 20 years enjoying his retirement.
Walks along the beach, trips to nature reserves, train rides or just hanging around in the garden, or watching football on TV, Busbee lived life to the full and many of his adventures are documented on Youtube.
He died earlier this month after a short illness.
Les said: “I remember Busbee from when I was at school and we used to try to teach him to swear. He never did though – he didn’t talk much.
“In later years, if he squawked too much, I would tell him to shut up and he then started squawking and telling himself to shut up afterwards!
“When the owner of the pet shop retired he sold him to an elderly man in Belgrave, but I already kept parrots and I was asked if I would take him on.
“When I got him home, I cut off his leather jesses used to tether him and he was never tethered again. He loved to be around people, he went everywhere with me – Busbee wasn’t a pet he was my mate.
“He was a very intelligent creature and had a fantastic life.
“He came on holidays, to family parities, trips to the seaside – he needed company, because he was used to company in the pet shop.
“He had his own TV and radio and would sit on the back of the sofa. He liked the football, he loved the music on it and he also liked wildlife programmes.
“He also liked to be outside – he would bark at the dog and imitate the birds – he was a one-off.
“Nothing fazed him, if it rained, he would walk inside, he didn’t fly in – I don’t think he knew he was a parrot – he thought he was a person!
“He had been ill for about three days and was on antibiotics, but he died on Saturday January 20. It’s broken my heart to lose him.
“So many people knew him, I’ve had over 450 messages of condolence.”
Busbee’s body is currently in a freezer while Les makes the decision on whether to have him stuffed and displayed somewhere locally like the museum at Middleton Hall.