Which bird can mimic a car engine?

| David Lewis | Nature



The lyrebird is a songbird that resides in the woods and prairies of Australia and only there.

It’s a big bird. An average male will reach 35in (90cm) and an average female just a notch-less.

They have very limited flying capabilities and will rarely take to the air except for downhill gliding and almost exclusively to escape danger. 

While it can hardly fly nor run fast, the lyrebird got one divine gift – it can mimic the sound of pretty much everything, from other birds to koalas, dingoes, dog barks, crying babies, and even human speech. And if you think that impressive just wait – they can also perfectly imitate artificial sounds such as mill whistle, cross-cut saws, chainsaws, car alarms, fire alarms, camera shutters, rifle-shots, video games sound effects, and yes – car engines. 

Bonus fact 1: While the lyrebird will mostly use its vocal repertoire for courtship purposes, it has also been recorded to make alarm sounds to scare predators.

Bonus fact 2: As its fleeing options are limited it will ofter scan the ground for shelter. Firefighters sheltering in mine shafts reported they have been joined by lyrebirds during a bushfire. What can I say – great minds think alike!