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September 11, 2007

R.I.P.

Alex the Gifted Research Parrot

(Thanks to Cheryl Howard)

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Four?

I'm on fire! Come on Sioxie--lets go to Vegas!

Polly wanna

Aaaaarrrrruuugh . . .

suicide. who could stand 30 years of that?

Bored to death.

woo hoo!! Cheryl!! WTG!

He tried to steal the shoes.

He...was able to express desires, including his frustration with the repetitive research.

yep..poor thing couldn't stand it any longer and bit the cracker for the last time!

I call a drumstick!

. . . could count to six, identify colors and even express frustration . . .

"What part of 'Want a cracker' don't you people understand!"

ps: If he was a Norwiegian Blue, he'd just be resting.

"He could count up to six, including zero, was able to express desires, including his frustration with the repetitive research."

As a grad student, I caw-caw a hearty AMEN to that sentiment.

FWIW, Alex completely revitalized language research after B.F. Skinner's dire influence all but killed a variety of ape language research projects, regardless of promise and often regardless of research methodology. Alex and Irene Pepperberg (who loved him dearly) pioneered the model-rival teaching methods, which revolutionized how social animals are taught. Alex also changed perceptions about how birds relate to people and to the rest of the world.

R.I.P. Alex, indeed. It's a significant loss; he was a remarkable bird.

Let's all watch "Paulie" to celebrate Alex's life.

How come it didn't say HOW he expressed his frustration.

Weird question: Does that photo look remarkably 3-D to anyone else, or is it just the drugs?

This is seriously tragic news. I have been reading about Alex for years.

Bless his little countin' heart - he was all the way to seven just before his death. Maybe he finally reached Nirvana.

That's not how the Times reported it:

As she put him into his cage for the night last Thursday, Dr. Pepperberg said, Alex looked at her and said: “You be good, see you tomorrow. I love you.”

sniff.

How sad!

Poor Alex. :,-(

I've got a grey and they are smart, but Alex was just amazing.

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