People who own parrots know that they are incredibly intelligent and unique animals. Well, apparently the parrots seem to know that too, because they are trying to spread their wings and help influence other birds.
Parrots who live in captivity often pick up on the language that their owners speak. They will learn phrases and words that are said around them because they have a natural ability to mimic sounds.
Whether people are teaching their birds to say "hello" on purpose, or if they are just mimicking words they hear often, they have and incredible memory and will retain this knowledge for years.
Parrots can live a very long time. The Macaw can live up to 50 years, where a Kakapo can live for 95. In their long lives, some of them end up getting lost from their families and end up integrating back into the wild.
When they make it back into the wilderness, they seem to be having some interesting effects on the environment...
The parrots are able to retain their learned language when they leave captivity, but that's not all they do! They have apparently become little professors to their fellow feathered friends!
In Australia, reports of voices in the treetops have emerged. While it sounds like the beginning of a horror movie, it's actually just a bunch of parrots and cockatoos who have been taught to speak by other birds!
Because the parrots who lived in homes know basic language, they have passed it along to all the wild birds and they have taken to chattering up in the trees. Witnesses say that they often hear expletives and general chatter as they walk through the forrest.
Ornithologist, Jaynia Sladek, says that "There's no reason why, if one comes into the flock with words, [then] another member of the flock wouldn't pick it up as well."
Apparently it helps distinguish them from the pack, and prove they are a good choice for potential mates. Sladek says "For some species it's like advertising 'I am very fit because I can learn a lot of different birds' [calls]'."