Can Crows Speak English?

One of the ways to determine the intelligence of an animal is its cognitive ability.

Naturally, when we refer to cognitive ability, language plays an important factor.

Crows are known for their superb intelligence and many studies have already proven how these birds are intellectually ahead of many animals.

But are crows intelligent enough to understand and speak the human language?

The limits of the language ability of animals is only until mimicry.

Until today, no animal has already been proven to be intelligent enough to hold a conversation with a human, let alone speaking fluently in English.

Like parrots, crows can only mimic human language, such as English words.

Even though they have superb cognitive abilities, they are not on the level of being able to understand and communicate with humans using a human language. 

Check out my article – Can crows talk?

Can Crows Talk In English?

Believe it or not, crows can talk.

What is more surprising is that they are not only limited in speaking English.

Any language they often hear can be mimicked by these amazing corvids.

But there is one limit to their ability: while crows can talk in English, it is not in the conversational level as they only mimic the words they hear from people.

Like parrots, crows only mimic the words and sounds they hear.

Thanks to the part of their vocal chords which is the syrinx (also called the voice box), crows are able to produce sounds, though they do not particularly understand its meaning.

Partnered with the crows’ amazing brain functionality and intelligence, these birds are able to mimic and produce words or sounds quite quickly and accurately.

They can perfectly remember the sounds and words which makes it easier for them to talk. 

Just remember that even these black birds can talk, you would not often hear them as often as parrots.

This is because they are not really close to humans, hence they do not have that much opportunity to pick up words.

Can Crows Understand Human Language?

You may now have a rough idea about the cognitive capabilities of crows.

They can mimic sounds and words; they can use tools to achieve their desired results; they can even remember faces of people and animals quite vividly.

But can they understand human language?

The answer is, unfortunately, no.

Crows are not that intelligently-gifted enough to understand language.

Naturally, if they are not able to hold a conversation with humans, they would not also be able to understand it.

Crows only mimic sounds and words they hear.

Though they can produce it, it does not really mean they understand it.

But crows still show great intelligence.

Studies have revealed that crows can distinct human voices.

Meaning, not only they are able to recognize your face, but also your voice as well!

What is more amazing is that they can also do the same thing for language.

They know that there are different human languages. 

What Language Do Crows Speak?

There is really no way to determine what language the crows speak.

Similar as to how these birds cannot understand us, but only mimic us, it is also the same in our perspective.

We only know that crows produce “caw” sounds to communicate with their companions.

Generally speaking, crows use different calls for different contexts.

These calls are generally divided into two categories: companion calls and context calls.

Companion Calls

Companion calls involve burst and silence patterns of cawing sounds.

These calls suggest that crows are communicating to one another, hence there are some forms of silence in between as if waiting for a response. 

Context Calls 

Context calls are the series of sounds that crows produce.

This is generally produced when the birds are in form of excitement or extreme emotion.

The context calls are much longer and fluctuate in volume, pitch, and intensity.

Oftentimes, crows make context calls whenever there is a predator nearby.

Check out my article – Crows cawing and circling

Can Crows Say Hello? 

Crows are able to say hello, but not because they understand what it means and certainly, not for the purpose of greeting you.

These birds can usually pick up the word “hello” because it is one of the most common words that humans say. 

Since these birds are intelligent enough to mimic and pick up human language, saying “hello” to other people is easy.

This is especially true for crows that are living in urban areas, like cities, where human interaction is quite frequent. 

You’re going to love this very cool video of a crow talking! Yes talking!

Can a Crow Be a Pet? 

Owning and keeping these intelligent birds as a pet is a seriously cool thought.

You would get to train, keep, and take care of them after all.

Surely, crows can do and learn amusing things. 

Unfortunately, keeping them as pets will only make them suffer.

Treating them as a pet can impact their physical and mental health.

These birds generally thrive well with their flock, and they are not really suitable for captivity. 

Also, be mindful that there are countries that have laws against crows becoming pets, like the United States.

All states in the US penalize people that keep crows as a pet since it is illegal. 

Crows are often one of the protected birds in the world.

Instead of keeping crows as a pet, it is far better to only befriend them. 

Want to befriend a crow? Check out my step by step guide How to befriend a crow?

Wrapping Up

Crows are highly intelligent beings to the point that they can mimic sounds and words easily.

These birds have a unique vocal organ that allows them to produce sounds and human language.

But crows can only mimic it, it does not really mean that they understand what they are uttering. 

Because of their amazing intelligence, it is really enticing for some to keep crows as a pet.

Unfortunately, having these birds in captivity will not be the best for them.

These birds are better off in the wild along with their flock. 


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