Get smart curated videos delivered to your inbox.   SUBSCRIBE
The Kid Should See This

The Fanciest Bird in the World: Superb Lyrebird

Watch more with these video collections:

Captured on video by Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Anastasia Dalziell and University of Western Sydney’s Justin Welbergen, this is a male Superb Lyrebird, an Australian songbird who is not only a fancy dancer, as shown, but can also skillfully mimic the sounds of the environment around it. From The Lab of Ornithology:

On a carefully cleared patch of the forest floor, he begins the courtship display by fanning elaborate tail plumes over his head and quivering them to achieve a shimmering effect. He then coordinates a precisely timed song-and-dance sequence, and finishes off with a rapid-fire recital of songs borrowed from other species. When the evolutionary pressure to impress mates is at its strongest, the results can look and sound downright bizarre.

…As bizarre as a bird that sounds like a chainsaw. You may know the Lyrebird from the famous BBC Earth clip with Sir David Attenborough. Listen to it mimic a camera shutter, a kookaburra, a car alarm, and more:

Related exploration: The Lab’s All About Fancy Males interactive feature.

Related videos: Bird Song Hero and The Birds of Paradise Project.

This Webby award-winning video collection exists to help teachers, librarians, and families spark kid wonder and curiosity. TKSST features smarter, more meaningful content than what's usually served up by YouTube's algorithms, and amplifies the creators who make that content.

Curated, kid-friendly, independently-published. Support this mission by becoming a sustaining member today.

🌈 Watch these videos next...

Elephant mom wisdom and sparrow songs: Is culture common in the animal world?

Rion Nakaya

Sing a Song of Sixpence with six North American black birds

Rion Nakaya

A Short History of the Nightingale, animated

Rion Nakaya

Plantpot Parabolic, a DIY reflector for recording birdsong on a smartphone

Rion Nakaya

British Birdsong, an illustrated montage of sound

Rion Nakaya

Gannet life on Bird Rock in Newfoundland

Rion Nakaya

LET’S GO LIVE with Maddie and Greg, a live YouTube show for kids

Rion Nakaya

Rangers candle the Royal Albatross egg at the RoyalCam nest

Rion Nakaya

A rare sight: The Yellow-billed Loon

Rion Nakaya