Nigel, an English-speaking African grey parrot vanished from his owner's home four years ago. His return was surprising in-and-of-itself, but Nigel returned with a new skill: the ability to speak Spanish!
The Daily Breeze reports a California veterinarian facilitated the reunion. The veterinarian was looking for her own lost parrot, and was contacted by the owners of a dog spa. The dog spa's owners had a bird that matched the description of the bird the veterinarian was seeking, but alas, it wasn't her bird.
The veterinarian discovered the bird had a small microchip embedded in its skin -- and she set out to find its owner, The Daily Breeze reports.
It was discovered that the microchip was never registered, but The Daily Breeze reports the veterinarian was able to trace sales records back to a California pet store, where she was able to learn Nigel's owner's address.
Luckily, he was still living in the same home he was living in when he purchased the bird.
"I showed up at his house and knocked on the door. I introduced myself and said 'have you lost a bird?'" the veterinarian told The Daily Breeze.
Although Nigel bit his owner when he was first picked up -- Nigel's owner says he's thrilled to have him back, The Daily Breeze reports.
Soon after they were reunited, Nigel's owner learned his bird has acquired a new skill: speaking Spanish!
A senior bird keeper who has worked at the San Diego Zoo for 18 years told Mashable it's likely Nigel came to live with Spanish-speaking people during his four-year absence and quickly learned Spanish.
African grey parrots are some of the animal kingdom's most intelligent birds.