A SINGLE feather was all that was left after a burglar plucked a parrot from its perch in an Accrington garage.
Mittu, a seven-month-old African Grey, was proving a real hit with customers at Antley MOT Centre, in Blackburn Road, until it was stolen shortly after 3am last Friday.
Garage owner Zahid Khawaja, 27, said: "I was looking after Mittu for a friend while he is on holiday.
"I have an African Grey at home myself and they would have made too much noise together so I decided to keep Mittu at the garage.
"He was very chatty and loved to whistle.
"He could say a few words and would wolf-whistle at the ladies when they went past.
"All the customers really liked him."
Zahid thinks the thief came specifically to steal Mittu as nothing else, including his tools, was touched.
Mittu is described as having pale grey feathers and a red tail and was taken in his distinctive gold metal bird cage worth £150.
Zahid said: "Mittu is worth anything from £600 to £1,200. I don’t understand why the thief has stolen him, though, as parrots have a really good memory and he will not take to somebody who causes him distress.
"I can tell Mittu was distressed as he had plucked out a feather and there were seeds and water from his cage all over the floor.
"All that was left was this one long feather so I think he must have put up a bit of a struggle."
He added: "I haven’t told my friend he is missing yet as I don’t want to ruin his holiday. But hopefully we might be able to get him back before he returns."
The thief got into the garage by breaking the lock on the front door, setting off the burglar alarm, but by the time Zahid got down Mittu had gone.
Anyone with information is asked to contact police on 51212 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.