Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Dorian Grey the African Grey Parrot

Since Yahoo editors have both insulted and injured me, why do I even look at Associated Content these days? Because it contains updates on people like Michael Segers and his feathered friend, Dorian Grey.

Many people feel that our animal friends both listen and talk to us, and can use a hundred or so words. (At the Cat Sanctuary, Bisquit talks, Grayzel listens, and Mogwai can do both.) Some people hoped that apes would be the animals whose ability to learn human language is most conspicuous, but actually birds, and especially African Grey Parrots, are better at learning human language and relating to humans as pets than apes are.

Dory's use of English is quirky; he apparently divides living creatures into two categories, "cats" and "birds," and calls his human a "bird." He uses "cookie" to mean anything nice. He seems to experience a ringing phone as a noise that bites his ear, and is likely to bite others' ears if they don't make it stop.

The latest of Dory's very clever pet tricks to be captured on digital camera was:

Dory doesn't do phone or e-mail interviews, but he granted a text interview to a fan here: