Skip to content
Join our Newsletter

Lovebird's art makes Dragons' Den

Victoria bird owner on popular show tonight
Luigi is a busy paper-shredder and gives owner Mary McQueen plenty of material to work with.

A Victoria bird with an insatiable desire to shred paper is making a pitch on the Dragons' Den tonight.

Luigi the Lovebird is "chief shredding officer" for James Bay resident Mary McQueen, who creates greeting cards from Luigi's paper mess with a business called Hand and Beak.

"He's shredded my T4s, paycheques, books and any mail that comes through the slot," McQueen says of her busy bird.

"It's nesting behaviour and Luigi just loves doing it. "

Luigi is a nine-year-old African Lovebird, part of the parrot family and known for their social and affectionate behaviour.

McQueen, who works at the law library at the University of Victoria, said she got the idea for greeting cards a few years ago after cleaning up one of Luigi's shredding frenzies, gluing the colourful paper pieces to card stock and making a card for a friend. "It looked like a Jackson Pollock picture and I just started experimenting," said McQueen. "I started selling them, but I'm not great at sales, so I asked the Dragons."

Although she can't reveal details of her pitch or if she secured a deal with any of the Dragons, McQueen did say Luigi "made quite a scene" during the CBC television taping earlier this year.

McQueen and Luigi are the last contestants in tonight's episode airing at 8 p.m. The program, featuring the opinionated, often ruthless billionaire, Kevin O'Leary, Boston Pizza owner Jim Treliving and new Dragon David Chilton, author of the Wealthy Barber, started its seventh season last week.