An animal lover who rescued an injured pigeon has become a real-life Dr Doolittle after taming the bird – to become his house pet.
Eccentric Nigel McFarr nursed the stricken bird back to health after he found it starving in the corner of his work warehouse.
But when he released the pigeon it refused to fly away – and now lives with him and wife Valerie at their home in Emersons Green, Bristol.
They have named it ‘Silver’ because it perches on his head and shoulder just like Long John Silver’s pet parrot Captain Flint.
The bird waits for them to come home before joining them in the house – relaxing in the lounge and eating food from their hands.
It is believed Silver fell from a nest at the John Lewis warehouse in Bristol where Nigel, 65, works as a fitter.
The bird was ”close to starving” when he took it home eight weeks ago. He fed it garden seed and water and put it in a rabbit cage to recover.
Nigel said: ”His eye colour changed from white to brown and he started to get purple and green plumage around his neck.
”He was gobbling up all the seed and soon began to look a lot brighter.
”After 10 days I thought I should let him loose in the back garden and we expected him to fly off.
”Val was in the garden on a reclining chair and the first thing he did was go and sit on her head.
”Since then he has barely left our sides. Every time I go into the garden he comes to sit on my shoulder like a pirate’s parrot, that’s why I named him Silver.”
Silver lives in the couple’s garden and swoops down onto their heads when they arrive home from work.
Nigel added: ”When I’m out in the garden he always finds me – we’ve had him eight weeks now.
”We once saw him on the roof with a wood pigeon and thought, that’s it, he’s off now, but he still returned.”
Nigel is known locally as a ‘Dr Doolittle’ because he has rescued many other stray animals including cats, dogs, a duck and bred lop-eared rabbits.