Update: Rhea The Naked Birdie Has Passed Away

by Jordan Julian
Jordan is a writer from New York and a current student at the University of Virginia.

The naked lovebird who touched the hearts of millions of people on Instagram has passed away. Her human updated Rhea’s fans and followers in a touching Instagram post: “On Tuesday morning, I received the most difficult call so far in my life.

Rhea was found sleeping, very peacefully. A sleep that will last a lifetime. Sometime around 3:00am she passed away, she passed to a better life.”

LittleThings has republished an article on Rhea in loving memory of her naked birdie antics. 

Mark Twain once said, “Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.”

And while that may be true in the human world, at least in public (in private, be as naked as you want), it’s clear that Twain never met Rhea.

This little lovebird has been making quite an influence, and is teaching us all a thing or two about self-acceptance, all while being quite naked.

Rhea lives with Psittacine beak and feather disease, or PBFD, a virus that causes all of her feathers to fall out and expose her skin. More severe forms of the disease also cause issues with the beak and claws, but Rhea, luckily, hasn’t had any of those issues.

The result is that she looks like a little pink dinosaur, but that didn’t bother her adopted mom, Isabella Eisenmann, who rescued her in July.

In fact, Eisenmann was so taken with Rhea that she even started an Instagram account for her, and the Internet has fallen in love.

And it’s not just because she looks so unusual. Rhea reminds us that no matter what life throws at you, or what you look like, you’re still a lovable individual deserving of having a good time.

Check out how Rhea deals with her condition, and how she’s inspiring her human friends to accept themselves a little more.

[H/T: The Daily Mail]

Rhea the lovebird has Psittacine Beak and Feather Disease (PBFD), which causes her feathers to fall out and leave her in the nude. This is a virus, and not related to anxiety-related feather pulling.

While the disease can also affect the beak and claws, hers are fine. However, because she has no feathers, she can’t fly.

But she makes do.

She can always hitch a ride on Isabella Eisenmann, who adopted her in July.

Eisenmann, 23, says that at first, people made negative remarks about Rhea, but that only inspired Eisenmann to make Rhea even more public.

“I didn’t really care, and wanted to make people understand that different is beautiful,” she says.

And Rhea doesn’t care either. She doesn’t let her condition stop her from making new friends.

Or from being curious about all the interesting things out there.

Eisenmann has also been contacted by other bird owners whose birds have PBFD.

“Reading their stories and knowing there are other people out there that also gave birdies a second chance gave me hope,” she says.

And no matter what, Rhea always seems to like what she sees in the mirror.

Because she doesn’t have feathers, Rhea can’t fly. “But she’s so stubborn she keeps trying,” Eisenmann says. “She’s not afraid of anything.”

Of course, not having feathers means Rhea gets cold very easily, but Eisenmann says that friends and fans have sent her many tiny sweaters to help Rhea stay comfortable in the cold Boston weather.

Eisenmann is also careful to keep her apartment warm, too.

And a variety of sweaters means that Rhea can experiment with all kinds of styles, including this one, which somewhat mimics the natural feather coloring of a lovebird.

And she can show off some team spirit, too.

At night, Rhea likes to sleep under a thick blanket to keep the chills away.

And of course, Eisenmann is always available to provide some extra warmth.

“Her bubbly attitude and happiness for life amaze me and everybody who meets her,” Eisenmann says. “It’s like she has no idea she’s sick.”

There’s no cure for PBFD, but Eisenmann is grateful for anyone who has offered Rhea a tiny sweater, a toy, or even just a kind word.

Check her out in action in the video below, and please SHARE if you think Rhea is beautiful just the way she is!

Due to restrictions, this video cannot
be viewed in your region.