“Star is caught devouring planet”
I read this and thought, "Tom Arnold is really off his diet for good this time."
So that's why when my local - rather LARGE - crow scolds me in the morning I am more apt to listen than to the morning doves? or is it because he (she?) is LOUD. And BIG.
Damned crow didn't live here but dumb ass me all poor babied it one hot day and put out water and now I've got a crow bitching when I go to the car.
Maybe it's not a morning crow?
Of course birds are talking. No animal, bird, or insect makes noise for art. Fun maybe, but not art.
Oh, yes, of course -- but our perspective might be skewed if we (as in the public at large) think of their language as music. And I wouldn't be so sure about not doing things for the sake of art...google "Beluga sketchbook Mystic". Twenty years ago, animals didn't play, they only practiced hunting or evading techniques -- which we know is now BS. And some of them might use tools, but they didn't TEACH...whoops, okay, we caught them teaching each other. And dogs understood commands, but couldn't think abstractly about a word meaning an object, the way a great ape could (although 25 years ago, apes couldn't that either) but damn that border collie, he showed us.
It's such an exciting time -- the pace of narrowing the gap between what's "human" behavior and what's "animal" is accelerating at a wonderful rate. Religion's just about the only thing we have left...but I'm not going there!
wake me when they admit that rocks talk.
Talk to my shaman- she'll tell you all about how rocks talk. :)
:) I've never believed that they didn't talk - only that we often don't listen.
Used to drive my pastors absolutely MAD.
Good for you! Pastors need that kind of challenge to keep 'em fresh and thinking!
It's true. They do. I used to have the kids for 4th and 5th grade vacation bible school and loved the questions. Unfortunately the adults (I was a teenager) didn't appreciate the kids' questions. I thought they were great though.
Yes Mere I helped teach vacation bible school. You can quit laughing now.
Oh, golly! I bet those kids remember you very fondly!
I taught Sunday School. Let's pause and contemplate THAT.
Ha! Last night, during the 7 hour drive from NC to MD, Lani asks me "Mama, do you think when we make animal sounds at animals, we might really be saying something, and it might really be inappropriate or stupid? Like, the cat is saying he's hungry now, and we meow back at him "lightning bugs!" or something similar? " I'll have to tell her she's on to something.
Tell Lani that I have seen the look of utter contempt on Pushkin's face when I meow back at him and she's entirely correct.
I have those same thoughts! I always wonder if I meow back at a cat if I sound completely stupid. I will say that my "bark," which is basically me yelling "HEY" really sharply is pretty effective... it has brought a lot of dogs up short.
I used to pretty much expect a "you idiot" look from Brat, because when I meowed back at him, I usually was mocking him anyway. Which resulted in him meowing back, which resulted at me meowing at him, which resulted ...
In him punching you in the eye...
Well, yeah, there was that.
Frank the cat (part Siamese, part tabby) was a big talker. We always listened more or less patiently and when he wound down we'd say, "But then what happened?" and off he'd go again. I miss that cat and our conversations!
Once Ranzo the red bellied Poicephalus learned enough words in English he used them all the time and with inflection and tone to make his meaning clear.
Once I came back to the camper and he asked me, "Dere's a good bird?" (The "th" sound was hard for him so he used "ds" instead.) I said, "Yes, Ranzo, there's a good bird," and let him out of his cage. He said, "Apple?" and I, of course, answered, "Yes, Ranzo, you can have some apple!" I gave him a slice of apple and he said, with great satisfaction, "Apple!"
This was not an isolated incident. He used his words and noises completely appropriately except when he was practicing them. He would do the same thing with the word "shower" and "step up."
I'm sure all animals are speaking some kind of language that makes perfect sense to them even when they're not using sounds. We're just too slow to understand them and have the added handicap of thinking we're just sooooooo more important than anyone else on the planet...
My Lory (Pepper) uses cuss words when appropriate. When I would drop something she'd scream dammit dammit dammit (she knew that word when we got her) but I never thought much about it -- I'm prone to say the same thing.
Then Jon and I both dropped a dish (long story) and it went flying her direction. She screamed FUCK - pretty much clear as a bell nice hard consonants and all. Not a word I'd heard from her before. The F was a bit iffy but the rest was right there and in her (mine) voice.
She also says thank you but you have to catch the inflection and tone - her enunciation isn't the best because, well, she's a Lory. She also calls the cats and talks to the birds outside. She still calls for both of my boys and yells come in when someone knocks. Funny though, when my Mom died, she quit callling for her (Granny)
Go with that where you will ......
Parrots are simply amazing. I always thought birds were cool but Ranzo totally educated us in the seven years he was with us. Everything changed because of him and I will be forever grateful for his friendship. He died of complications due to anesthesia in 2007 and not a day goes by that we don't think on him and miss him.
Lories are such beautiful birds. A friend of mine had a couple of the Rainbow ones and when they flew around her house they were like animated light. So beautiful. Not tame or talking but truly lovely.
Those are such good stories! I have one, too, of course, in much the same vein.
I stubbed my toe next to Ranzo's cage one day and before I could stop myself I said, with great emotion, "DAMNIT!" Then I looked up and saw him looking right at me with great interest. I went into another room to cry and wait for my toe to stop hurting. Next day he dropped a toy off the dining room table (also his play station) and he said, very clearly in my voice, "DAMNIT!" dadgaderie and I had to go into that other room so we could laugh our heads off without risking encouraging him. :D
That's interesting that Pepper no longer calls for her Granny. When Frank the Cat got so sick the only answer was that horrible trip to the vet, we brought him to Ranzo and said, "Say bye, bye to Frank, sweetie. He's really sick and today he's decided to leave us." Which was true- his expression made it perfectly plain that he was done. Ranzo looked at Frank really hard (they were pretty good friends though Frank never understood why in the world we wanted anything as silly as a bird) and didn't say a peep. Weeks and weeks later we took Ranzo to the bird sitter as we were going away for the weekend and he couldn't come with us. He knew the sitter and loved her and her house and other birds but when we said, "Bye, bye," he totally freaked out. He threw himself to the floor and screamed and beat his wings against the wall, feathers went flying and even a drop of blood from his nares where he hit them against the wall... We managed to catch him in a dish towel and the three of us cuddled him and managed to calm him down but golly- it was a job. We didn't know what to say at first and then we realized what was going on so we re-explained what had happened with Frank the cat and after a while he seemed to "get it." Saying over and over again that we'd be back if we possibly could seemed to do the trick. He shuffled his feathers together and sulked on our hands and then suddenly, he shook it off and was done. When we left he was happily playing with a new toy and we all had a much greater appreciation for his intelligence and memory.
Oh wow - that is cool and yes they associate things - bye bye makes sense - bye bye meant leave and never come home.
Pepper is tame. I've had her for about 15 years and she wasn't full grown when I got her. Her wings aren't strong enough for full flight. She prefers to climb about anyway. She was raised with cats (and a doberman) so she is unafraid of the cats and Sasha and she are great friends. Sadly a hopping cussing red bird tends to scare cats so they won't play with her :(
What kind is Ranzo?
((sorry for hijacking your post Mere))
Eh, you two! I just decluttered and now there's feathers EVERYWHERE.
Get a room! Or a birdcage. Or your own damn LJs...oh, that's right...
I did tell you about the big damned crow bitching at me didn't I?
Tickling your bird fettishes are we?
See ya t/m darlin
Yes, we felt reeeeeally stupid about the whole "bye, bye" incident after we'd figured it out. We never spoke to him casually again. He was way too smart for that!
Ranzo was a red bellied poicephalus, a small African parrot in the same general family as the Senegals. They are generally very sweet birds, relatively quiet and relatively tidy. In other words, they don't scream all the time and they don't usually throw food! :D He was a particularly good talker and had an extensive vocabulary but his favorite things were sounds. He was the Foley artist of our lives while he was with us. Every door squeaked, the phone beeped before you touched the buttons, etc. He was such a doll. But he was very sick, too. We believe he may have had Proventricular Dilation Disorder even before we bought him but whatever it was he never had a normal life. He should have lived 30-35 years but only lived seven and the last couple of years were pretty tough for him. We were so traumatized at his death that we could not bear to have him necropsied. Which we should have done. I'm sorry for that now but at the time it was just impossible. He was our only bird, my Mom's "grandbird," and his death was so sudden and unexpected (though in hindsight he was too weak for anesthesia which is what killed him) that we were incapable of thinking at all clearly.
Pepper sounds like a real character! How wonderful that she's been with you so long. So many parrots I meet are rescues with the most dire stories behind them. I'd love to see pictures of her or even meet her. I just love birds even though we don't have one these days and probably never will again. I love bird sitting, though, and get regular fixes when we're in Seattle because friends have a red belly who we get to sit for.
Anyway... we should probably take our bird talk somewhere else! Sorry, Turnip! We just got carried away. :)
" I have to run out to the faire site tonight to dump a load "
I'm just imagining you heading out to faire just to poop and then heading home.. LOL!
At least use the right icon for this...
So when they're all clustered out in the sun, trying to be healthy, and I come along and smear them by the hundreds into boxelder bug paste...I am the skin cancer of boxelder bugs, just faster-acting.
Thank you for introducing me to the word "monoterpenes". I will use it all weekend.