#PetsNextdoor Member Stories

Displaced Peacock Finds a New Home in Tampa

Written by Anne Dreshfield

For a peacock in Tampa, FL, life wasn’t always sunshine and palm trees.

The peacock had been living happily in the Virginia Park neighborhood, and favored a spacious backyard. The owner of the home fed him regularly, and soon enough hewas a regular fixture in the community.

The owner of the home, however, moved away – and the house was set to be demolished by a company who purchased the lot. A neighbor posted to Nextdoor with their concerns for the colorful bird, asking if neighbors should relocate him to a wildlife sanctuary.

While neighbors deliberated, the home was demolished, leaving the peacock to survive in sparse brush and a single tree on the now-vacant lot. Neighbors delivered fruit and bread to the peacock every day, and lovingly named him Big Bird.

The construction became too much for Big Bird. While neighbors worried over his fate, he abandoned the lot he called home, settling in another yard – where the owners weren’t thrilled to have him.

Neighbors persisted, sharing ideas on Nextdoor of how to safely capture Big Bird and find him a more permanent – and suitable – home. One neighbor referred a man with a 4-acre farm who would be able to give Big Bird a home. Others jumped in, offering to help trap Big Bird. Thanks to the discussion, neighbors finally settled on a young trapper for the job.

“The bird was just boogeying around the neighborhood, and the trapper was leaping all these fences,” a neighbor recalled.

Finally, neighbors cornered Big Bird on a porch, wrapped him in a soft sheet, and whisked him to the spacious farm. A neighbor drove the truck, while the trapper sat in the back, helping Big Bird drink water out of a bottle along the way.

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Big Bird on his journey to his new home.

Big Bird’s new home proved to be an oasis for a bird like him: there were horses, cows, pigs, and at least two other free-roaming peacocks.

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Big Bird in his new home.

Big Bird was placed in a pen temporarily so he could get used to the sights of the farm, his new neighbors, and a more routine feeding schedule.

“He was walking around, bullying chickens,” one neighbor said. “He took it better than neighbors did.”

Big Bird is now living happily on the farm, and neighbors plan to visit occasionally to see their colorful ex-neighbor. As one neighbor put it: “I’m happy it worked out.”


Originally reported by the Tampa Bay Times.

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