Stephanie Gray-Ruggiero
Owner & Daughter
Joan Cirino
Consultant & Mother
Malden, Ma 02148





Over twenty-eight years ago I was given my Red Lore Amazon, Sassy, as a gift. It wasn’t until several years later, through knowledgeable bird friends and the many informative bird lists that I realized my first parrot was a wild caught bird, already 7-8 years old. A short time later while on a family vacation, my husband was taken with a 12 week old Green Wing Macaw he named Sammy and I fell in love with an 8 week old cuddly Moluccan Cockatoo that I named Miss Saint Toota Bell (actually the Queen). Since we couldn’t make a decision between either of them, we purchased both and home we went.  We had no choice but to learn the art of hand feeding.  That was a learning experience all in itself. I often wonder how either survived our lack of knowledge and the learning curve in between.  Anyway, that was the start of “NEBS” (Never Enough Birds Syndrome).  It’s a scary disease for which there is no known cure. All bird owners can be stricken with it.  Since those days, we have added Mikey, the Military Macaw; Cody, a Timneh Grey; Coco, a Nanday Conure; Comet, a Blue Headed Pionus; Frick and Annabelle, two Black Headed Caiques; Goliath, a Hyacinth Macaw; Shasta, a Sun Conure; Jade, a Blue Headed Amazon; Jazmin, a Yellow Head Amazon and Gorgeous George, a Cockatiel,  for a flock of 14 fids.   We love each of them for their own "special ways" and for their individual comical antics. 

I am fortunate to have a husband that shares my love of fids or I would definitely be in big trouble. He is my best friend and my biggest helper.  Our “used to be beautiful den” turned into a total bird room for the larger fids with the rest of the flock spread throughout, as our home seems to require less furniture each year.  The fids even saved for their own side-by-side refrigerator for all their food, herbs and treats, unsulfured and natural of course.  My husband does 90% of the cage cleaning (thank goodness for him because I hate cleaning), I do the feeding, preparation, cooking and the toy making. When you have so many to provide for it’s a necessity to constantly search to provide quality nutrition as natural as possible  and  safe toy parts.  I found it was easier said than done.  In our flock we have four that are allergic to sulfur dioxide and locating foods without this additive already included in mixes was impossible, hence I started creating the "Just Say No" foods.  The "Just Say No" line of foods is used with my flock daily as is our Herbal Supreme mix. A healthy immune system means great annual exams and long life spans!!  


Our social life is occupied by the fids almost entirely and running the Avian Naturals and All BirdToys website. Nightly each group of fids will watch TV with us and have their one on one “special” time with each of us and patiently wait to share snacks with us.  We do love to snack… I don't have as much time now to make toys as I once did but have acquired some of the best sources for safe toys and parts which are available on our website. We have topped over one hundred safe toy parts at last count and always searching for more!  We will continue to search for the best and safest offerings to display at Avian Naturals and All BirdToys to make shopping easy and fun.


All in all I’m a very fortunate person, I have an understanding husband (Dave), five wonderful grown children:

 Sheri married to Lou 
Stephanie marrying Michael in April 2008
Angelo married to Deb
Denise married to Bill
Ron married to Tiffany

And the grandchildren are many
Stephen, Emma, Katie, Samantha, Robert, Haley, Madison, Parker and the twins Preston and Joselyn


 They all think I’m over the edge where my fids are concerned but then there are those healthy 14 sets of eyes, with beaks and fluffy feathers that love unconditionally, at anytime.  Now what more could anyone ask for, except maybe a larger home:)   Now isn’t that what we’d all wish for, along with a maid, butler, vacations every so often???? I just can’t remember my life without feathers in it, can you?



© Since 2000 A division of Avian Naturals
All Rights Reserved