Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Humans have been long thought to be the only animals capable of dancing. But research concludes that Snowball (a cockatoo) can synchronize his movements to musical beats. The findings are remarkable as nonhuman animals were previously unknown to be able to synchronize movement to any kind of sound.
Scientists believe the cockatoo's ability lies in its vocal learning capabilities. Like humans, cockatoos can imitate complex sounds, requiring a tight integration of auditory and motor systems. If correct, scientists can learn more from performing studies on other species with similar voice learning capabilities (e.g. seals and dolphins).
His favorite song is the Backstreet Boys 'Everybody'.
Snowball can also dance to Michael Jackson, Queen, Ringo Starr, among others.