African Gray Parrots
African gray parrots are super-smart birds!
They’re so smart, in fact, that they’ve become famous. Take Alex, for instance:
One Smarty-Pant Bird Named Alex
- An African gray parrot named Alex was one of the smartest parrots ever. Alex learned the names of 50 different things.
- He could also tell the difference between 7 different colors and 5 different shapes.
- He had a vocabulary of about 150 words.
- He could even count!
- Like any parrot, Alex could mimic the human voice. But Alex was exceptional: he seemed to understand what he was saying!
- In other words, Alex seemed to know how to use human words in the correct way—not just blindly repeat what a person said.
- Sadly, Alex died in 2007 suddenly at the age of 29. (He most likely had a heart attack or stroke.) Alex's last words, spoken to his owner and teacher, Dr. Irene Pepperberg, were "You be good. See you tomorrow. I love you."
African Gray Parrots in the Wild
- Wild African gray parrots are found in the tropical forests of central Africa.
- They live in noisy flocks of up to 30.
- The birds fly around together looking for fruit and nuts to eat.
Should You Get an African Gray Parrot as a Pet?
- African grays are bred and raised in captivity and sold to pet stores.
- But, like other parrots, they can live for 50 years or more.
- Parrots are very demanding pets.
- Almost everyone would be much happier with a parakeet, or a pet cat or dog.
- To find out more why owning a parrot isn't such a great idea, click on this link: Should-You-Get-a-Parrot-for-a-Pet