Intelligent Design, the best explanation of Origins

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Intelligent Design, the best explanation of Origins » The catalog of life » Animals that can imitate human speech

Animals that can imitate human speech

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1Animals that can imitate human speech Empty Animals that can imitate human speech on Wed Feb 08, 2017 6:31 pm


Animals that can imitate human speech1

At least one elephant is using his trunk for more than just eating. Koshik, a 22-year-old Asian Elephant in a Seoul, South Korea zoo, has learned to reproduce five Korean words— "annyeong" (hello), "anja" (sit down), "aniya" (no), "nuwo" (lie down) and "joa" (good)—by placing his trunk inside his mouth to modulate sound.

The seal could say a number of words and phrases, including "hey," “hello there,” “how are ya,” “get outta here,” “get down,” and his own name (you can listen to Hoover talking here). Hoover laughed, too, and when he died in 1985, he got his own obituary in the Boston Globe. Scientists believe that pinnipeds might help us understand what's involved in complex vocal learning.

The undisputed champion of speech mimicry was an African grey parrot called Alex. He was trained by cognitive scientist Irene Pepperberg of Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Alex could quickly learn and imitate new English words. He could even say "I love you", and wished Pepperberg good night after a hard day's training. When Alex passed away in 2007 at the age of 31, fans from all over the world mourned. 2

lyrebirds have learned to mimic the sounds of human machines like camera shutters and chainsaws.


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