It is not uncommon for a wide variety of species in the animal world to imitate human actions and gestures. However, a bird in an Australian zoo appears to be in a different league, having picked up one of the most terrifying sounds – a child’s wailing. Now, a video of the bird call has taken social media by storm, and many are panicking how accurately it resembles the cry of a human child.
Even though Taronga Zoo has been closed to guests due to the Covid-induced lockdown, zoo keepers recently heard a loud cry, only to realize it was from their resident lyre bird, called Echo. True to its name, zoo officials mentioned that the bird has “an AMAZING ability to reproduce a variety of calls – including a baby’s cry!”
The heartbreaking identity theft of the seven-year-old male lyrebird not only caught the attention of zoo officials but also caught the eye online, with the clip going viral on social media sites.
Watch the video here:
Lyre birds are imitates amazing, and are known to mimic the sounds of chainsaws, car engines, car alarms, barking dogs, music, ringtones and human voices, 9 News reported.
Leanne Golebiowski, supervisor of the bird unit at the zoo, said The Guardian that Echo started using snippets of the moving sound a year ago, but “worked on his craft” during the Covid lockdown in Sydney.
Although zoo officials don’t know where Echo picked up the noise, Golebiowski surmised that the talented avian must have learned from a young visitor. “But that concerns me, because I thought the zoo was a happy place for families to visit!” said Golebiowski.
And they’re right to be worried because Echo has also chosen other not-so-pleasant sounds, including the “evacuate now” announcement from the zoo. Saying he has mastered the sound of an electric drill “which is frighteningly precise,” staff added that they can even nail the fire alarm.
As the video went viral, it left a lot of people perplexed, with many social media users saying it must have been a “very terrifying experience for the zookeeper.” Others, however, couldn’t help but joke about appreciating the bird’s ability to mimic sound so perfectly.
Imagine that this bird reproduces the roar of the T. rex of Jurassic Park. Dinosaurs couldn’t roar like that, but can you imagine the reactions of people 😂 It’s true humans. I am a dinosaur! 🦖 https://t.co/f8cANiPmET
– François Boonzaaier (@ FrancoisBoonza1) September 4, 2021
Holy shit, it’s done well by this lyre bird. On par with the Attenborough recorded specimen. Also worrying if we imagine the same ability in a sci-fi predator luring dinner. https://t.co/AfTEbGNIEL
– Kevin Leroux – Vaxed, baybee! (@LeKevbo) September 4, 2021
imagine working nights and hearing this https://t.co/O8CFBJ7Pom
– 💜 aster / wolf 💜 (@asterysms) September 3, 2021
LMAOOOO nature is too funny https://t.co/TYid6ly0z9
– marvin (@bankrizzle) September 3, 2021
It’s both insanely cool and scary as hell https://t.co/LawFqKn7gg
– Kemhariya enthusiast (ArtisticAnkylosaur / Tim) (@ TimVersteeg4) September 3, 2021
It’s the worst thing that I ever heard in my life
– Dear Eugene (@eugenebalougene) September 4, 2021
Echo is an amazing lyre bird to be able to pick up a baby’s cry !! I think he really is a crying baby. Echo got the tone all the way to the tee. I would like to see more Echo please.
– Melissa Warfield (@MelissaWarfield) September 4, 2021
Never let him escape into the wild !! It’s scary-incredible! ??
– Alcira Doring (@AlcherdJ) September 4, 2021
it’s a real horror movie potential here
– Cyclops (@ LittlePirateSe1) September 3, 2021
– UCF Sam (@ spiderlegs2) September 3, 2021
– Postapocalyptic dinosaur (@nyrorosaurus) September 3, 2021
This poor zookeeper who has to listen to the two children cry all day and now the lyre bird too! ??
– Chelsie Sims 🦕 (@ChelsdoesStuf) September 3, 2021