Parrot sounds fire alarm, saves family, owner says

Peanut, the parrot hero

Emily Longnecker/Eyewitness News

Muncie - A parrot's alert may have saved the life of a Muncie father and his son. Their house burned this weekend, leaving them without a home.

Friday night, Shannon Conwell and his 9-year-old son fell asleep on the couch while watching a movie. Around 3 a.m., they were awakened to find their home on fire after hearing the family's parrot, Peanut, imitating a smoke alarm.

"The bird just started squawking, and he mocks everything he hears," Conwell said. "He was really screaming his head off."

While the smoke alarm was going off, it was the bird's call that caught Conwell's attention.

"I sit up, smoke everywhere and then I get up and I see fire starting. Fire everywhere," Conwell recalled. "I grabbed my son and my bird, and got out of the house."

"I remember my dad grabbing me and the bird and ran out of the house," Tyler Conwell said.

The home was destroyed in the fire, and the Conwells will have to find somewhere else to live, along with their new hero, Peanut.

"If he wasn't here, we wouldn't be here today," Conwell said. "He's family. He's been family since day one."

Conwell said he only bought the bird six months ago, but feels now that it may have been fate.

"Something told me we had to have this bird," he said. "I always thought, you know, I paid a lot of money for this bird, but I never, you know, it's the best money I ever invested in."

Shannon and Tyler hope to get a veterinarian to give Peanut a check-up. They want to make sure he's okay after being exposed to all that smoke.

The Associated Press also contributed to this report.