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Swearing parrot behind bars

A SWEARING parrot has become such a huge internet hit his owners have turned their home into a fortress to keep him safe.

Videos of Sparky turning the air blue have racked up more than three million hits on YouTube.

The bird squawks X-rated one-liners such as: “I’ll boot yer b**s son”, “haw b**bag” and “Aw for f***’s sake”.

But owners Jim and Wilma Connelly, from Kilmarnock, fear the foul-beaked African Grey could become a dead parrot.

They fear he will be stolen or kidnapped and held to ransom.

Jim has installed steel bars on the back door, fitted security cameras and an alarm, and attached heavy-duty locks to all the doors and windows.

They’re so worried about Sparky coming to harm, they even take him with them on caravan holidays.

Sparky has become famous for repeating catchphrases from hit TV show Still Game, in a broad Scottish accent.

But Sparky, who has a fan page and Facebook site, does more than just trot out swear words.

Jim, 53, said: “A woman came over and was talking to him in parrot-talk, saying: ‘Who’s a pretty boy then?’ He just said: ‘You’re a dumb cow!’

“We had some guys in doing work and they could hear Sparky swearing in the next room. They thought I was swearing at them and were getting angry until Wilma explained.”

Jim’s latest project is teaching Sparky to sing Flower of Scotland.

Mediums have told the couple that Sparky has a spirit talking through him. “One local medium visited and said he was the spirit of an old guy who used to live here,” said Jim.

“He’s famous around here. Sometimes people get drunk and stand outside the house at night doing Sparky catchphrases.

“We get cranks from America giving us abuse and saying a bird can’t talk or he shouldn’t be in a cage. One guy sent us a video from America. He said: ‘God is angry with the parrot who swears.’”

Sparky’s YouTube clips have been played on Channel 4 and the couple put him in for Britain’s Got Talent. But Jim said they pulled him out of the show because he was too stressed by the TV equipment.

“People have said Sparky must be worth millions. I think £20,000 is a sensible figure because they cost £1,000 from a pet shop.”

Jim is a full-time carer to Wilma and has had to dig deep to protect the home. “I’ve spent at least £2,000 on security,” he said. “The alarm was £700 and the back door cost £500. Add in all the locks and cameras and it’s over £2,000.”

Jim said: “We have got to be careful all the time to stop someone stealing him or kidnapping him. When we are out a lot of people know he is in here.”

Wilma, 55, said they would never sell Sparky, even though people have made serious offers. “He’s actually part of the family. I wouldn’t do without him. He’s my second half,” she said.

“It’s unbelievable because we don’t know what’s going to come out his mouth next.”

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