Kookaburra learning to laugh

To: John Tongue <>
Subject: Kookaburra learning to laugh
From: Andrew Taylor <>
Date: Wed, 3 May 2006 08:48:48 +1000
On Wed, May 03, 2006 at 09:03:35AM +1000, John Tongue wrote:
> I'd have thought most young birds would learn their calls in a pretty
> straightforward manner from their  parents.  Certainly, young canaries
> don't learn to sing properly if not kept near an older male, and there 
> are distinct call dialects among many species, etc.

In oscine passerines such as Canaries vocalizations are a mixture of
learnt and innate behaviour.  Outside the oscine passerines vocalizations
are mostly innate - although learning has been found (e.g. parrots
hummingbirds).  Kookaburra vocalizations are likely innate.

I would have guessed a a 7 month-old Kookaburra should be capable of the
full range of vocalizations.  Some of the vocalizations will be signals
not often used of a bird of this age.  Don't know about the "laugh".


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