Captive birds teach others to speak English


There are many reports of meaningless conversations from treetops, which have attracted the attention of the inhabitants of some Australian regions. However, the origin of this strange phenomenon was quickly unraveled. According to Australian Geographic magazine, these voices are actually birds, that is, poultry like parrots and catatues, which have escaped captivity and which, to the surprise of many, have been “teaching” wild birds the words they learned during their life close to the human being.

According to Jaynia Sladek, an ornithologist at the Australian Museum, quoted by Inhabitat, some of these birds are just natural imitators, able to acquire new sounds based on things they hear around them. This is for example the case of ‘lyebird’ or ‘bird-lira’, an Australian species that lives on the ground, best known for its ability to reproduce any sound you hear, such as the sound of car engines and even fire alarms or babies crying.

In the same way, what happens is that in birds, once domestic, the influence of human language does not cease when they return to nature, and English “becomes part of their language”.

For this ornithologist, some species (but not all) of birds actually perceive a correlation between genetic aptitude and the ability to imitate, so it is quite likely that birds exhibit their new vocabulary when released into wildlife. It will be like announcing “I am very fit because I can learn many different bird songs”.

Wild birds are later able to learn this ‘chatter’ from the old domestic birds and in turn teach these new words (or sounds) to their offspring, which justifies the reason why, without knowing where, words were heard in English from the treetops. Unfortunately, some profanity.