The most intelligent bird species in the world

Alongside primates and dolphins, birds are among the most intelligent animals on Earth. Among the 10,000 bird species worldwide, only a few of them make it to the list of super smart creatures. Which are the most intelligent bird species in the world? Let’s find out in the following article.

1. Raven

When it comes to intelligence, Ravens rank at the top of the list. You may have heard of the story “The Raven and the Pitcher,” where a raven cleverly filled a pitcher with stones to raise the water level and quench its thirst, showcasing the intelligence of these birds. Many scientists consider ravens to be among the smartest animals on Earth.

In addition to being able to create tools for their own use, ravens understand cause-and-effect relationships, can engage in reasoning, count up to five, and recognize human faces. In Israel, wild ravens have been observed using pieces of bread as bait to catch fish. In Norway and Sweden, they have been seen pulling fishing lines out of the water when they feel a fish has taken the bait.


Ravens rank just below humans in terms of intelligence and have even outperformed non-human primates in certain research experiments. Additionally, what’s impressive is that the brain-to-body weight ratio of ravens is comparable to that of large primates and marine mammals (such as whales and dolphins), and only slightly lower than that of humans.

2. Kea Parrot

The Kea Parrot also is one of the world’s most intelligent birds, ranking among the top ten smartest bird species. This highly intelligent parrot species was first found in New Zealand. Kea parrots are known for their cunning behavior when it comes to finding or stealing food. Referred to as the “Clown of the Alps,” Kea parrots can cause damage to various objects, particularly cars. In some intelligence tests conducted by a master’s student at the University of Canterbury, Kea parrots outperformed non-human primates.


3. African Grey Parrot

African Grey Parrots are highly intelligent creatures known for their remarkable ability to mimic human speech. In fact, these parrots possess exceptional intelligence that can rival that of a 5-year-old child. Researchers studying African Grey Parrots have discovered that these animals exhibit sophisticated reasoning abilities on par with a four-year-old child. Experiments have also shown that an African Grey Parrot can determine the location of hidden food using inference and elimination skills previously observed only in humans and non-human primates. Like humans, they can engage in social interactions and communicate effectively.


4. Long-tailed Parakeet

Long-tailed Parakeets are known for being one of the most affectionate bird species. They are considered highly intelligent among all bird species. These parakeets have a humorous and highly emotional nature. Long-tailed Parakeets come in various beautiful colors and sizes, with the most popular ones being the large species like the Blue and Gold Macaw, known for their cheerful, mischievous, and charismatic personalities. The Red-tailed Parakeets, on the other hand, tend to be sensitive and enjoy the company of their immediate family.


5. Budgerigar

Budgerigars, also known as Budgies or Parakeets, are found in Australia. In fact, with careful training, a Budgie can memorize a significant number of vocabulary words. You’ll be surprised by the Budgie’s ability to remember a range of 300-500 words and phrases, which is quite remarkable for a bird. This somewhat demonstrates the intelligence of Budgerigars compared to other bird species. An interesting revelation is that male Budgies often have better speaking abilities than females.


6. Magpie

Magpie Magpies are the only birds that have successfully completed the mirror test. The mirror test is a breakthrough method for assessing self-awareness in any given animal species. In a basic experiment, the animal is placed in front of a mirror. They exhibit behaviors such as touching the mirror and attempting to remove the image they see in the mirror. This indicates self-recognition. Magpies have easily passed this test.


7. Yellow-naped Amazon

When it comes to diverse parrot species in the Amazon, the Yellow-naped Amazon is a prime example of exceptional speaking ability. They not only mimic language fluently but also pronounce it with such accuracy and intonation that it can be surprising. From a young age, Yellow-naped Amazons are trained to speak and understand the words or phrases taught by their owners. This parrot species is often known for being cautious and highly alert, being friendly only with their trusted human companions. An interesting aspect is that these intelligent parrots can repeat a simple song they often hear.


8. Eclectus Parrot

Among the talking bird species, the Eclectus Parrot is also included in the list of highly intelligent animals, comparable to dolphins. This bird species is native to New Guinea. They are renowned for their excellent ability to mimic sounds from their surrounding environment. What’s even more astonishing is their quick learning and repetition of familiar melodies. With their intelligence, Eclectus Parrots sometimes play pranks on their owners by deceiving them through learned sounds and tones.


In conclusion, through this article, we hope you have gained interesting insights about the most intelligent bird species in the world. Stay tuned for more fascinating knowledge from us.