When the Bloom family took an abandoned baby magpie under their wing over a year ago, they had no idea the chick would become a loving, permanent member of their clan in Sydney, Australia. The bird–named Penguin because of her coloring–was only a few weeks old when she was found on the ground near the library by young Noah back in late 2013. After consulting a family friend who is an experienced veterinarian, husband and wife Cameron and Sam Bloom and their three children (Rueben, 13, Noah, 11, and Oli, 9) nursed the young magpie back to health.
Now, Penguin is free to fly wherever she pleases, but she never fails to return to the Bloom household to see her favorite humans. According to Cameron, the magpie usually hangs around the family in the morning until the kids leave for school, and then she'll fly off on her own. But she's always there to greet the three brothers when they come back in the afternoon, as Cameron tells ABC News: “She's here at 3:30pm usually when the kids get home from school. She sings when they come up the driveway.”
While she will most likely someday raise her own family, for now Penguin is perfectly happy with the one she has now. She often sneaks inside to eat the Blooms' scraps at the dinner table, snuggle with them in bed, play catch with the kids, or just perch contentedly on whatever furniture or person happens to be nearby. As magpies are known to be incredibly intelligent birds, it's no surprise to learn that Penguin has even started mimicking the humans' voices, singing, and joyfully flapping her wings whenever the Blooms wave their arms at her. “I never thought she'd become as much a part of the family as she has,” Cameron says. “[The kids] love her like a dog, but better.”
Cameron, a talented photographer, documents the family's life with Magpie on their Instagram account @penguinthemagpie. Be sure to check it out for more stunning shots of the warm Bloom clan and their unusual animal companion.