Search

Video: Belsize community unite singing parrot and owner after ‘evil prank’

13:00 10 July 2014

Pet parrot Coco with owner Bob (centre) and the people who helped rescue her - (from left) Hally Bowman, Belen Gomez, Rudy Bazeley and Pernille Finess. Picture: Mark Hakansson

Pet parrot Coco with owner Bob (centre) and the people who helped rescue her - (from left) Hally Bowman, Belen Gomez, Rudy Bazeley and Pernille Finess. Picture: Mark Hakansson

Archant

The owner of an exotic parrot that escaped on a two-day adventure around Belsize Park, Swiss Cottage and South Hampstead has said he witnessed “the best and worst” of humanity as he turned to Twitter and Camden residents to try to track down his pet.

Bob Stephenson-Padron was distraught after Coco Lee, a three-year-old African grey parrot whose extensive talents include singing and dancing to Baha Men hit-song Who Let the Dogs Out? and reeling off phrases like “kiss me”, flew off into the distance two weeks ago.

Becoming more desperate by the minute, the Swiss Cottage resident turned to his Camden neighbours for help.

Councillors retweeted pictures of Coco, friends helped put up posters offering a reward and the Ham&High spread social media appeals calling for her return.

Owning a parrot had been a childhood dream for Bob, and he was left feeling one of his worst nightmares had come true when he received his first phone call the following day.

“Someone called saying they’d found Coco and that she was up a tree,” he said. “I was so exited and was ready to race down there.

“But then I heard them suddenly saying Coco had fallen onto the floor. And that a fox had come along. And that it was eating her.

“I was so upset. I thought she was dead. I asked where they were and he gave me an address. I looked it up but it didn’t exist. I was so confused.”

Shocked that a fox may have chosen much-loved Coco as its next meal, Bob could do little more than mourn the loss.

But it was a group waiting for a bus in Belsize Road the morning after the call that exposed what turned out to be “the most evil” prank.

Music publisher Rudy Bazeley, 28, was in his flat across the road when he saw a commotion at a bus stop. “I popped my head out the window to see what was happening and there was this lady looking pretty anxious,” he said.

“I didn’t know why but she then turned her body and I just saw a parrot on her shoulder. I just burst out laughing. It was one of the craziest things I’ve ever seen.”

The “anxious lady” was fellow Belsize Road resident and web designer Hally Bowman – a self-confessed parrot-phile who had always wanted one of her own.

“When I saw this parrot standing on the bus stop roof I decided to strike up a conversation,” she explained. I said, ‘hello’. It said ‘hello’ back and seconds later it was on my shoulder.

“Coco jumped onto another woman’s shoulder and eventually ended up in Rudy’s flat where she was later reunited with Bob.

“You can feel so alone at times in London but the whole community came out to help bring Coco and Bob back together – he was so happy when I called him.”

Bob, who works for Penrose Care in Belsize Lane, says the help from everyone to find Coco “changed his life”.

“The fox prank was very evil – but the good side of the community really came through for me in the end,” he said.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hampstead Highgate Express visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hampstead Highgate Express staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hampstead Highgate Express account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

Friday, December 2, 2016

Police are appealing for witnesses after the death of a woman who was hit by a coach in Camden.

Friday, December 2, 2016

A City boss from Hampstead likened to the ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ has been jailed for a year after sexually assaulting two women.

Friday, December 2, 2016

A pedestrian was hit by a car in South Grove in a road traffic collision this afternoon.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Welcome, hope and tolerance have been the three key messages for students learning about refugees.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Camden Council has claimed a “major victory” after Airbnb announced today that it will limit entire home listings to 90 days a year in London.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Haringey has the third-highest proportion of homeless residents in England, new figures have revealed.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

In the first of a series written from the Greek town of Thessaloniki, currently home to more than 20,000 refugees, a trainee journalist from Kentish Town writes about her life as a volunteer

Thursday, December 1, 2016

A pair of Barnet schools believe the future is bright after announcing a “strategic partnership” on Monday.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now