Animal Emotions

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Elephant Speak: Koshik Mimics Korean

Asian male elephant can say hello, no, sit down, lie down, and good

Here's a wonderful story to follow up on some of the sad news about which I've been writing. We've just learned that a captive male Asian elephant named Koshik can imitate human speech using his trunk (see also). Koshik "has learnt to imitate human speech and can say five words in Korean: hello, no, sit down, lie down and good. The zoo animal places the tip of his trunk into his mouth to transform his natural low rumble into a convincing impression of a human voice." Koshik can also imitate the pitch and timbre of human speech.

The story of Koshik's amazing linguistic abilities follow up on a story of a beluga whale named Noc who can also imitate human speech

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Please stay tuned for more on surprises in fascinating lives of the animal with whom we share Earth. 

The teaser image can be found here.

Marc Bekoff, Ph.D., is Professor Emeritus of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado, Boulder.

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