A PEAHEN who became "part of the family" for the volunteer who hand-reared her at home has died.

Little Charley, who captured the hearts of visitors and workers at the Pittencrieff Park aviary, passed away on Monday afternoon.

She lived at home with volunteer Carlyn Cane after vets discovered she had a curved femur and malformed hips, while her knees dislocated every time she walked.

Sadly, on Sunday, she slipped a tendon and was left unable to stand.

Carlyn posted on the Peacocks in Pittencrieff Park Facebook page: "Thank you all for your lovely and very comforting messages.

"She may have only had a short 16 months but boy did the tiny girl have the biggest personality.

"From constantly having her tail up, taking things and running away, eating what she shouldn’t and stealing the hearts of everyone who met her.

"But none more so that mine. She slept in my room, she honked when I left her and truly was my little shadow and my sidekick.

"My heart hurts so very much but she was never destined for long and although we always knew that, her body gave up so suddenly.

"But she is free from pain, she’s up there and I bet she’s causing havoc!

"Run free my baby, you made me a better person and you are tucked in my heart for always."

Charley wasn't able to live with the other birds but frequently visited with Carlyn and became a recognisable feature in the aviary.

She has also been known to tour Dunfermline in a pram, and even attended celebrations when King Charles visited the city last year.

She has two brothers - Blu and Rory - and was hatched in an incubator as her mum had stopped sitting on her egg.

As a chick she was taken home to be cared for by Carlyn, who soon realised there was something wrong.

After being diagnosed she stayed with her adopted family in order to meet her medication needs and stop her having problems with the other birds.

Peacocks in Pittencrieff Park lead warden Suzi Ross wrote online yesterday: "Today at 3.30pm, little Charley, our beautiful, funny little girl, went over the rainbow bridge.

"She will be very much missed. We all loved her. Carlyn did a fantastic job of hand rearing her.

"It is a massive lose for Carlyn and her family, who adopted her as part of their family.

"We love you, Charley. Malcolm is waiting for you."

Carlyn and Suzi were told in April that there would be no "miracle" for Charley as her condition had deteriorated.

They were committed to showing her "all the love in the world" until she became too unwell.