She's tiny, she's naked, and she's an Instagram superstar: Rhea the "naked" lovebird is basically the spokesbird for parrots with Psittacine Beak and Feather Disease, a virus that causes feather loss and malformation of the beak and claws. She's also the sweetest little thing we've ever seen.
The teeny-tiny bird flew into the spotlight when Isabelle Eisenmann, a 23-year-old from Boston, adopted her after seeing a social media post about her. Eisenmann created an Instagram account for the "naked birdie," and the rest is history — Rhea's adorable photos have helped her rack up more than 250,000 followers.
Although some birds with Psittacine will lose their claws and beaks, Rhea has a mild form of the condition and doesn't need anything more than an annual blood test. She is still featherless, however, and requires extra layers to keep her warm.
Moved by Rhea's story and her super-cute photos, people from all around the world have been knitting and sending her itty-bitty sweaters. She's got more than 85 so far. Every time Rhea receives a new sweater, Eisenmann conducts a mini photo shoot — and we're kind of obsessed with the results.
Seriously, how cute is she?!
Rhea's condition might make her look different from other birds, but clearly, she's still living her best life. We could all learn a thing or two from this confident little bird.
"Acceptance is key, and no matter how different you are physically, you are still beautiful; that's what I want people to learn from her," Eisenmann told Bored Panda. "Always smile, be happy, and have a positive attitude."
[h/t Bored Panda]