Zoo's new strategy to teach manners to foul-mouthed parrots

In 2020, the UK's Lincolnshire Wildlife Park, home to the National Parrot Sanctuary where the public can re-home pet parrots, temporarily removed five newly-adopted parrots from view because the birds were cursing at visitors. Seems to me like they should have promoted the potty-mouthed parrots as an attraction! And indeed, they are now being united with the larger flock.

"When we came to move them, the language that came out of their carrying boxes was phenomenal, really bad. Not normal swear words, these were proper expletives," the park's chief executive Steve Nichols said. "We've put eight really, really offensive, swearing parrots with 92 non-swearing ones."

The new hope is that the pleasant parrots will teach the naughty ones some manners.

From CNN:

If the new strategy works, the eight parrots could learn "all the nice noises like microwaves and vehicles reversing" that the other parrots in the flock favor, Nichols added. But if the other 92 instead pick up the expletives, "it's going to turn into some adult aviary."

After some time in isolation, integrating the five original birds into the flock was "mostly" successful, Nichols said, but they still curse sometimes, and even laugh afterward, mimicking the most common reaction to their foul language.

Parrots precisely echo the sounds they hear, so "six of them have got men's voices, two of them have got ladies' voices and when they're all swearing it does sound really bad," Nichols explained.