Here, they are all eating banana. I find that it's easier to photograph animals if you give them something to eat. Sasha and Sammy are our first cockatiels, and we've had them for about three years. We got them from a breeder rather than a regular old pet store because A: it's more cost effective, and B: the animals seem healthier. When we bought Sasha and Sammy, the breeder told us they were girls, but since then we've found out that they are really both boys. Usually you can tell the difference between a girl cockatiel from a boy cockatiel by the amount of yellow in their faces: boys are brighter, and girls are grayer, unless you're dealing with young'uns, in which case they're all gray-headed. Even though Sasha and Sammy look alike, their personalities are usually good indicators of who's who (just to be safe, my sister and I know the differing markings, so we can reliably tell our birds apart).
<---Sammy is the out-going one. He's a messy eater, and he's easy to put back into the birdcage.
Sasha on the other hand, is the cautious one. He's a much neater eater (hey, I made a rhyme!), and much more difficult to put away. He only goes back on his terms, if you know what I mean.--->
Neither Sasha nor Sammy are able to talk, but they can whistle and make "kissy" noises, and when they are hungry or want to be let out, they can really scream! But mostly, Sasha and Sammy are very mellow, and very sweet. They watch movies with us, read over our shoulders (while sitting on our shoulders), and best of all, they love a good neck rub! Sasha especially shows his appreciation when he gets a good scratching behind the ears (the red cheek-spots are actually a cockatiels' ears). The look of bliss on his face: priceless!
But enough about that. Now here's Hazel the Hamster!--->
Technically she belongs to brother Adam, but the whole family simply adores her, especially my mom; she loves to give Hazel a bit of spinach or something and kiss her on the head. Actually, that's what she does for Sasha and Sammy as well. Anyway, Hazel is the 4th hamster we've ever owned, and we've had her for a little over a year, but sometimes it feels like we've kept her for longer than that. She has the brightest eyes, the perkiest ears, and the glossiest fur. We got her from a pet store, because an employee told us she was pregnant, and so for 2 weeks after buying her, we didn't take her out of the cage or touch her even once! We never found any tiny hamster babies in that amount of time, though, so we figured that we got "jipped" by that pet store, or just the employee. Since then, Hazel has become, in my opinion, our most darling hamster ever. She scares Sasha and Sammy though; if she gets anywhere close to them, their crests go straight up and they both fly away. Hazel is also the most creative of the hamsters we have owned; she makes the coziest-looking "nests" out of the paper-towel and newspaper that we supply, and she looks simply precious when she's asleep.
My pets inspire me in my art: Here are a few sketches of Sasha, Sammy, and Hazel.
Pretty good, no?
I love my feathery and furry friends very much, and I hope that we keep them for a very long time.