An escaped pet cockatoo has been reunited with her family after “stowing away” on a Princess Cruises ship sailing a New Zealand itinerary.
The bird, named Harri, belongs to the Cozzi family, who lives in Nundah, in Queensland, Australia. Harri escaped when Michelle and Brett Cozzi, along with their four-year-old-daughter, Georgia, were packing for their cruise vacation on P&O Cruises Australia’s Pacific Aria. The bird flew away, and the family feared that they would never see her again, Princess Cruises reports.
The crew of the Sea Princess, however, later discovered Harri while the ship was sailing the Tasman Sea. Officers scanned the bird for a microchip and discovered that she was a family pet. They made Harri an honorary crew member, with her own laminated crew identification card, and put her up in a Sea Princess stateroom with daily meals for the remainder of the cruise.
The Cozzi family, meanwhile, was sailing on the Pacific Aria off Queensland when the Australian Agriculture Department sent them word that Harri had been found. Once back on land, the family was reunited with their pet bird at the Portside Cruise Terminal in Brisbane.
During the 14-day New Zealand cruise, Sea Princess Environmental Officer Tibor Filipovic served as Harri’s onboard guardian, along with the ship’s Master, Princess Cruises Commodore Giuseppe Romano. The ship’s crew followed the strict biosecurity guidelines that enabled Harri to return home, Princess said.
“The entire ship’s company has come to love Harri and she has been a very good shipmate and no trouble at all,” Commodore Romano said in a written statement. “But we could also see that Harri was missing her human family, so it was a great pleasure to be able to reunite them.”
As the journey came to an end, the Cozzi family delivered Harri’s birdcage to the terminal where Sea Princess docked, and then waited patiently while Harri received a pre-disembarkation veterinary check, which she passed with flying colors.
“We are very excited to have Harri home because she is a much loved member and indispensable part of our family,” Michelle Cozzi said. “We’d hoped for her safe return but after Harri had been gone for a few days, it wasn’t looking good. It was amazing to discover she had been found on another cruise ship. It was just the best news possible.”