Life with a pet who talks! My parrot's vocabulary list

7/9/2007

This morning, I heard that my African Grey Parrot, Rufus, learned a new animal sound. We were outside and he heard a ring necked dove cooing and then did the call himself.

Here is a partial list of things he can say:

(*** Some things that my African Grey Parrot says. Rufus is camera-shy so I haven’t gotten a video of him talking yet.)
(bomb falling and exploding) If I do the bomb falling whistle he will do the explosion.
(cell phone ring)
(clicks tongue)
(clucks like a chicken)
(cough, cough, cough)
(dials phone) Hello, yeah, OK, bye bye (Man’s voice)
(dials phone) What’s new? Mm hm, mm hm, mm hm…(Woman’s voice )
(dog howling)
(dog yapping) Little, yappy dog. This must be “Merlin”.
(dog, barking)
(dog, whines like a puppy)
(dove, mourning, cooing) Rufus loves animal calls.
(dove, ring necked)
(kiss sound)
(laugh, belly) man’s voice.
(laugh, giggle)
(laugh, sigh at end)
(meows like a kitty)
(microwave beep)
(mumbling) man’s voice
(peacock call)
(scream) woman’s voice
(smoke alarm)
(squeeks, various) He loves to imitate squeeky doors and drawers.
(tunk tunk tunk tunk) This sound like knocking on a hollow metal tank.
(whew!)
(whistle, wolf)
(whistles for the dogs) calls in the dogs when they bark
Bad boy
Booooop!
Buck buck buck buck bird
Bye bye! (says when we leave the house)
C’mere
C’mere (snap snap snap snap) snapping fingers sound
C’mere, bird (when walking behind another bird
Good boy!
Ha ha ha ha ha!
Hello baby!
Hello birby! — He gets baby and bird mixed up and it comes out birby.
Hello bird! — He will walk up to other birds and say this.
Hello Merlin (he must have had a little dog named Merlin where he used to live. He mentions Merlin, often)
Hello!
Hey! (He once said this after getting dive bombed by a parakeet)
La la la la la la la — Rufus like to make up his own songs.
Marco! (waiting for us to say Polo) — Rufus likes interactive games
Merlin! No! No! No! No!
Merlin! Sit, sit, sit, sit, sit!!
No way!
No! No! No! No!
Oh
Oh, boy
Oh, yeah
Pretty bird
Pretty boy
Shhh
Sit
WHAT ARE YOU DOING!!! (This one is loud!)
What in! (He’s trying to learn “What in the heck”, but that’s as far as he’s gotten)
What!
What! What! What! What! What!
What’s new, bird?
What’s new?
What’s that?
Whee ooooh!
Whew! (He says that when we take him out of his house to play)
Whoa!
Women!

Rufus had already lived with another family before I adopted him. His owners had divorced, and sad to say, neither one of them wanted him. (I would guess that it is because he talks in each of their voices.)

Rufus striking a pose

My African grey parrot, Rufus, sticking a pose

Rufus could already talk quite a bit before I adopted him. He’s really good at using words in context. His species is well known for being able to do that. He has learned quite a lot of additional words since he’s lived with me and my hubby, too.

Rufus also has a great love for animal sounds. He likes for me to tell him what each is called so he can say them on cue. The only one that he can do consistently on cue is whine like a puppy. That is his favorite animal sound. But, he is learning all the time. He loves to learn new things.

The list is not complete. I can’t remember everything he can say. I will be adding more as I hear them and as he learns new ones.

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