‘I learned it from listening to you, dad:’ How songbirds learn to sing

Zebra finches on a tree in Japan. Image: gettJTB Photo/UIG via Getty Images By Chelsea Harvey2016-06-22 15:34:11 UTC Certain songbirds have a pretty human-sounding way of learning their special tunes: They listen to their fathers. Scientists have known that zebra finches — one of the most oft-studied songbirds — learn their songs by listening to their dads, but a new study published Tuesday in the journal Nature Communications takes that a step further. Researchers are hunting for the neural pathways that allow the young finches to figure out how to sing. This may seem like pretty esoteric work, but research into song learning in birds could teach us about our own neurological development.  Zebra finches are a favorite of neuroscience researchers because of their intriguing song-learning behavior. While both male and…


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