Friday, October 31, 2008

The Amazing Lyrebird



There is an amazing species of bird that resides in Australia. It is capable of mimicking several other birds and animals. The bird I am referring to is called the lyrebird. They are known for their ability to mimic all sounds in their neighborhood, a truly amazing talent.

To secure a mate, lyrebirds create a territory and sing and dance. Females choose mates based on how elaborate their songs are. The more songs a male lyrebird knows, the more females he will have to choose from. Roughly eighty percent of a lyrebird’s song consists of expert mimicry of other birds and animals. Their mimicry is so extraordinary, they are known to mimic the occasional chainsaw, car alarm, baby crying, dog barking and camera shutter.

Check out this video of lyrebird mimicry on YouTube.
Although they are capable of learning many songs and noises, many of their songs are learned by mimicking local bowerbirds, or from each other.
If you are interested in learning more about these birds, please check out these sites:
Posted by: Michele Copeland (7)

35 Comments:

At 11:00 AM, Blogger PWH said...

that video was amazing. I've never heard anything like that before. How are they capable of mimicking so many sounds? I can't believe some of the sounds that bird could imitate, i couldn't even do it.

Jennifer Smith(7)

 
At 1:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

haha I loved the video! These birds are really quite impressive. Is there any difference between a male and a females ability to produce the bet mimicary? Are males more likely to sound point on?


Mia DiFabbio

 
At 1:49 AM, Blogger PWH said...

This is truly an amazing species...i wonder how this mimicry evolved as part of the mating song.

-Joanne Philippeaux

 
At 1:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very cool haha. I wonder how they can copy so many different sounds? How are they able to produce all these sounds?

Duy Nguyen

 
At 4:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow these are beautiful species. Do we know how many songs the lyrebird can mimic?

- David Huynh

 
At 6:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That was an interesting entry. I was wondering is there a specific age that the lyrebird begin to mimic other birds and noises?


- Debbie Theodat

 
At 6:20 PM, Blogger PWH said...

very interesting, does the article mention if they prefer some bird songs over the other? on what basis do they choose the songs they mimic?

Hessom Minaei

 
At 6:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

that was a really cool video :) very impressive species, I wonder if some birds know more songs than others and how long it takes them to learn them. I think mimicry between species of birds is very interesting because you would think it would mess things up but it clearly helps some birds.

-Julie Riley

 
At 6:59 PM, Blogger PWH said...

Is there any idea how these birds store their songs. I wonder if their is some difference in their brains that allow this.

Charles Scondras

 
At 7:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The video was awesome! I wonder how they can make such incredible sounds? Do they have super vocal chords?? Their range of sounds is unbelievable... They have make extremely high pitched sounds and extremely low pitched sounds. They also move their peaks/ vocal chords so fast...

Also do they copy the sounds they hear right after hearing them? Or do they just learn any sound they hear and then mimic at any point in time?

Brena Sena

 
At 7:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The sounds it makes are amazing! I'm curious as to why a bird would evolve a mating song that imitates other birds. Wouldn't it attract birds of other species? How does the female know it is a male Lyrebird singing?

-Jane de Verges

 
At 7:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't birds that continually come up with new songs do it through a type of open developmental process? If so, I am curious if this open process is becoming more common, in other words, are more & more complex songs becoming the norm for birds in general?

Allan Eldridge

 
At 7:53 PM, Blogger PWH said...

I am amazed by the talent of the bird. Do they get all their "songs" from sounds they hear or do they have a song unique to themselves? With such a diversity of "tracks", is there a certain similarity in songs that the females prefer?

-Helen Thi

 
At 8:35 PM, Anonymous Jen Kodela said...

When do these birds learn their songs? Are they capable of picking up new songs at any time or is there a certain time frame when they are able to learn them? What is the maximum amount of songs one bird has been witnessed to sing?

 
At 8:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you know if they're in any way related to parrots?
I know some parrots can talk and mimic voices as well, but I can't find any physical resemblence- so you know anything about that?

-Noam Pelleg
11/2/08

 
At 8:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow. Where is this bird commonly found? I'm thinking it is around people a lot to be able to learn those sounds. Otherwise it can learn a sound quickly.
-Sasha Rogers

 
At 8:51 PM, Blogger PWH said...

I did not think a bird could learn this many different types of songs. I think this bird is really amazing. How many songs can a Lyrebird learn and how long it take to learn a new song?


So Jin Lee

 
At 8:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It think the list of different weird songs they have learned is very cool. Does the lyrebird have a different song for each mate or is it simply able to attract more mates if it knows a more complex song? Also, are they combining different sounds they know in order to make the one more complex song?

Alex Jackson

 
At 9:06 PM, Blogger PWH said...

This is a very interesting species. Is there a certain period in the bird's life that they can learn new songs or can they continue learning throughout their lifetime? Do these birds ever attract mates of the different species since it could be copying their song?

Rob Lubenow

 
At 11:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've seen this video before and I love it every time I see it! I wonder if their voiceboxes (if you call them that in birds) are different than other birds' voiceboxes. Do you think only the males can make these sounds? Do they have a limit as to how many sounds they can copy?

-Alyson Paige

 
At 11:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That video is great! Do the lyrebirds' songs consist a sound they hear or do the lyrebirds' synthesize their own songs with various sounds they hear?

Amy Kawazoe

 
At 11:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW that is so cool, I was just watching the video that you incorporated with your blog, and it’s really amazing to here all the complex sounds coming from just one bird. Not just bird songs but also man made sounds, I was just wondering if the songs they choose depend on the similarity of their beaks with the other bird’s beak that are mimicking. Also if they are about to mimic a chainsaw and such, are they able to mimic human language, or human music? That would make a really interesting research. Thanks for the blog and I really like the video.

Tenzing Y. Dundutsang

 
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