Why are some bird species such good mimics?

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Offline chris

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Why are some bird species such good mimics?
« on: 24/12/2009 11:48:57 »
Parrots and birds of this lineage are exceptional mimics and can copy human voices, the sounds of other animals and even telephone ringtones.

Why do these birds in particular have this ability, or can all birds do this but we just don't tend to notice (because we don't keep sparrows as pets, for example) ?

Chris
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Offline RD

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Why are some bird species such good mimics?
« Reply #1 on: 25/12/2009 13:07:09 »
... can copy human voices, the sounds of other animals and even telephone ringtones.

and cameras (with motordrive), car alarm, and chainsaws,
 (see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VjE0Kdfos4Y&feature=related  1:54 to end)

[If it hadn't been for Sir David narrating, I'd have thought the sounds were dubbed-on rather than produced by the lyre bird, like in this spoof  [:)] ]
« Last Edit: 25/12/2009 13:18:04 by RD »