Navigation Links
An Elephant That Speaks Korean?
Date:11/1/2012

THURSDAY, Nov. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Koshik the Asian elephant can "speak" and make himself understood to humans using five words of Korean, according to a new report.

Researchers say Koshik's ability to imitate the five words provides new insights into the biology and evolution of complex vocal learning, an ability that is critical for human speech.

The five words spoken by the elephant can be readily understood by people who speak Korean. The words include annyong (hello), anja (sit down), aniya (no), nuo (lie down) and choah (good).

Koshik vocalizes with his trunk in his mouth, according to the study in the Nov. 1 issue of the journal Current Biology.

"Human speech basically has two important aspects, pitch and timbre," study author Angela Stoeger, of the University of Vienna in Austria, said in a journal news release. "Intriguingly, the elephant Koshik is capable of matching both pitch and timbre patterns: He accurately imitates human formants as well as the voice pitch of his trainers. This is remarkable considering the huge size, the long vocal tract and other anatomical differences between an elephant and a human."

She noted that elephants have a trunk instead of lips and while their large larynx can produce very low-pitched sounds, Koshik's can exactly match the pitch and characteristics of his human trainers' voices.

A structural analysis of the elephant's speech not only showed clear similarities to human voices, but also clear differences to the usual calls of elephants.

Koshik's unusual vocal ability may stem from when he was a juvenile and spent five years as the only elephant at a South Korean zoo. Humans were his only social contacts during this important period for elephant bonding and development.

"We suggest that Koshik started to adapt his vocalizations to his human companions to strengthen social affiliation, something that is also seen in other vocal-learning species -- and in very special cases, also across species," Stoeger said.

More information

The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association outlines children's speech and language development.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: Current Biology, news release, Nov. 1, 2012


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Autism Speaks creates Delivering Scientific Innovation for Autism LLC
2. Mary Rieser of Narconon Georgia Speaks Out For United Nations International Day Against Drug Abuse
3. Autism Speaks provides strategies to help a child with autism shows difficult behaviors
4. Automated autism screening tool available on Autism Speaks website
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
An Elephant That Speaks Korean?
(Date:10/13/2017)... , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... be giving viewers the lowdown on sciatica in a new episode of "Success ... focuses on current events and innovation and investigates each subject in-depth with passion ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 2017 , ... First Healthcare Compliance (FHC), an industry leader ... range of technology and learning solutions at the 68th Annual American Healthcare Association ... held October 14–18, 2017 at the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada. ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... IsoComforter, Inc. ... products, announced today the introduction of an innovative new design of the shoulder pad. ... so you get maximum comfort while controlling your pain while using cold therapy. By ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... LOS ANGELES (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 ... ... of Parsa Mohebi Hair Restoration, has recently contributed a medical article to the ... doctors, on cosmetictown.com. Dr. Mohebi’s article spotlights the hair transplant procedure known as ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... Mich. (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... has been named one of Michigan’s 2017 Best and Brightest in Wellness® by ... Brightest in Wellness® awards program on Friday, Oct. 20 from 7:30 a.m. to ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/18/2017)... Pa. and KALAMAZOO, Mich. , Sept. 18, ... , and OptiMed Specialty Pharmacy of ... to offer a strategic hub service that expedites and ... sought-after personal spirometer, Spiro PD 2.0, and wellness management ... spirometer is a medical device used to measure lung ...
(Date:9/13/2017)... 13, 2017   OrthoAtlanta has been named the ... Host Committee (AFHC) for the 2018 College Football Playoff (CFP) ... at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia . ... "I,m In" campaign, participating in many activities leading up to, ... ...
(Date:9/12/2017)... N.J. , Sept. 12, 2017  Consumer reviews on the ... Hearing as the number one company for hearing aids, ranking ... and fifteen other brands. ... Embrace Hearing Named #1 by Consumers For Hearing Aids ... Embrace Hearing is an online store that provides high ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: