EYE specialist vets near Leominster have given new life to an old bird.

Staff at the veterinary eye hospital in Marlbrook have successfully operated on the cataracts of an elderly Senegalese parrot giving it a clearer future.

“They usually live between 30 and 35 years but this one is known to be 47,” said Paul Evans, founder of the hospital.

“He had always flown free in the house but he damaged one eye 10 years ago and went blind in it.

“Then he got an age related cataract in his other eye and got very frustrated because he could not see and this stopped him flying.”

The Birmingham-based bird, which is bigger than a budgie but smaller than a cockatiel, is now seeing a brighter future thanks to the operation.

“The owners had almost got to the stage when they thought it was not fair to keep going with him,” said Paul.

“They felt his quality of life was not good because he was so frustrated.”

The surgery, which opened in 2002, has helped many different exotic animals in the past.

“We have treated a white lion cub from Bewdley, a tiger brought in with cataracts from Bahnham Zoo, Norfolk, and an eagle owl that had cataracts as well.”

The hospital holds day clinics in Wolverhampton, Stroud, Bristol and Wales, and many customers drive two or three hours to get to the Marlbrook surgery itself.