The birds often face trouble while calling and singing after drinking alcohol, according to a new research. In simpler term, researchers say ‘drunk birds slur their words’.
The researchers at the Oregon Health and Science University conducted a unique study to test the effects of alcohol consumption on the birds’ communication skills. They chose zebra finches for the study because these bird species are often used to understand vocal learning in humans in a better way.
Study researcher Christopher Olson said, “We just showed up in the morning and mixed a little bit of juice with six percent alcohol, and put it in their water bottles and put it in the cages.”
“At first we were thinking that they wouldn’t drink on their own because, you know, a lot of animals just won’t touch the stuff. But they seem to tolerate it pretty well and be somewhat willing to consume it,” Olson said.
The researchers discovered that just the bit of buzzes distorted the characteristics and features of the calls and songs of the birds. It was found that the chirping of birds became a slight fainter and slurred upon alcohol consumption.
Environment Yukon researcher Meghan Larivee said, “Most birds likely just get a bit tipsy and very few people would be able to pick them out as intoxicated. However, every now and then, some birds just overdo it.”
The sounds of birds who have consumed alcohol may not be isolated to the laboratory. The researchers in Canada found that waxwings in the Yukon can sometimes get sauced by the consumption of a few fermented berries as fall turns to winter.