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Home / Entertainment / Seals In Scotland Learn To Sing Star Wars And Twinkle Twinkle Little Star: NPR

Seals In Scotland Learn To Sing Star Wars And Twinkle Twinkle Little Star: NPR



Researchers trained Zola the seal to "sing" the Star Wars theme song.
                
                
                    
                    Courtesy of Amanda Stansbury
                    
                

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Courtesy of Amanda Stansbury
        
    

Researchers at Scotland's University of St Andrews have starred theme song and "Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star".

Star Wars theme, and then barks the tune back, stretching the last two notes.


University of St Andrews
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Amanda Stansbury did the research while earning her Ph.D. at St Andrews and Vincent Janik, director of the Scottish Oceans Institute.

"Stansbury said.

Stansbury said she had worked with three juvenile gray seals: Zola, Janice and Gandalf.

To teach the seals, Stansbury said they first recorded the seals making their natural sounds.

"The seals learned that, hey, I'm going to make a noise." "she explained.

Next, Stansbury and Janik, making a sound, making the tones higher, and rewarding those new sounds. And then she strung a few of those notes together to play the songs.

"The First Time You Hear Them Actually Imitate Something Recognizable Back, It Just Blows You Away," Stansbury Said.

Stansbury is now a zoo area supervisor at the El Paso Zoo in Texas.

Birds and dolphins are also capable of vocal learning, but they are unique because they have vocal chords. That might allow for new approaches in human speech therapy.

Stansbury said they would have had longer melodies if they had more time, but they had released the seal into the wild after a year of research. [19659006]

Certainly, there is more complexity to be learned in the Star Wars theme. Composer John Williams told NPR in 2005 that his music was designed to convey "heroic impulses and feelings and reactions."

Mark Hamill, who played Luke Skywalker in the original Star Wars trilogy, and wrote, "Another royalty for John Williams."

"Unfortunately, we do not have any income coming in from this," Stansbury said. That's about the only royalties we're going to have for John Williams. "


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