We’ve heard all kinds of wild claims about animals and language.

So what are we to make of a new finding that young goats start to bleat like their peers? Is it crazy? Or could it reveal something about human language?

UWA linguist Daniel Midgley does it for the kids on this episode of Talk the Talk.


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Show notes

An introductory article
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/9085654/Goats-can-develop-their-own-accents.html

The story, according to the “60-Second Science” podcast — with actual goat sounds!
http://www.scientificamerican.com/podcast/episode.cfm?id=upbleat-finding-kids-start-to-sound-12-02-15

The actual article (paywall, Elsevier)
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0003347212000401

We’ve seen animal “accents” before — here’s that silly BBC “cow accents” story
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/5277090.stm

But it’s not so strange to vocalise like your peers. Birds do it.
Google docs link

Whales do it.
http://www.livescience.com/14197-sperm-whale-language-accents.html

Even New Yawkers do it.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_dialect#Consonants

But why do we have accents?
http://linguistlist.org/ask-ling/accent.cfm