People are being careful about their language around an 8-year-old named Peaches who has a habit of learning and repeating the worst she hears.
Peaches is a Moluccan cockatoo, and staffers at Black Pine Animal Park say she used to be a pet in a household where she picked up a vocabulary that can be as colorful as her feathers.
The bird didn’t miss anything when a volunteer construction worker started cussing recently after a chimp threw feces at him, said Jessica Price, senior zookeeper at the sanctuary about 30 miles north of Fort Wayne.
“She started laughing and carrying on,” Price said.
Peaches then reverted to a few of her own favorites.
“Go away, shut up, shut your blankety-blank mouth,” Price said. “She says a lot of very bad words.”
It is difficult to get birds to stop using words they have learned, she said.
“We obviously don’t repeat them,” Price said. “We don’t encourage it.”