A few days ago we heard about the death of Alex, the Gray Parrot who can talk to the man using about 100 words. He was able to count, recognize shapes and colors.
He died in his cage at age 31, most likely due to a "blow".
We at Focus knew it well. They had interviewed him in Tucson, at the University of Arizona, because this feathery prodigy had denied the idea that parrots can only speak meaninglessly for a process of mechanical imitation.
Thanks to the availability of his instructor, Irene Peppenberg, we personally verified that instead Alex responded to meaning, expressed with his words his knowledge of animals and objects, desires and moods. Alex in short was a "character" that we were very proud to interview.
We present again that interview, together with the explanations of the ethologist Irene Peppemberg, who will continue her studies on language using some of Alex's young companions.
Download the exclusive interview with the Alex parrot.