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Australian Magpie Mimics Emergency Sirens In Viral Video

To most of us, magpies may not necessarily be known for their singing voices, but one little bird has been making waves across the internet for its amazing ability to mimic the sound of emergency service vehicles!

The now viral video was uploaded to Facebook.

Facebook | Australian Native Birds

Gregory Andrews, former threatened species commissioner, uploaded the clip to social media site Facebook's Australian Native Birds group.

The clip has since been shared over 3, 000 times, and has received over 1,200 likes!

Andrews was elated to have captured the bird singing.

Facebook | Australian Native Birds

In the video, the bird can be seen perched upon a fence, whistling the noise made by emergency service vehicles. Alongside the video, Andrews wrote:

"OK this is one of the coolest things ever. Today I met an Australian magpie in Newcastle NSW which had learned to sing the calls of fire-engines and ambulances."

These birds are apparently very intelligent.

Facebook | Australian Native Birds

Australian birdlife expert Geoff Maslen, explained, "They're extraordinarily attractive birds. They're very engaging birds, very intelligent and quite often they make friends, especially with those people who provide them with food," in an interview with CNN.

It turns out that these birds are good at mimicking a variety of other sounds as well.

Facebook | Gregory Andrews

While we may just think of magpies as birds that steal shiny litter off the floor, they apparently have quite an aptitude for copying other bird species and even some aspects of human speech!

The New South Wales government even goes so far as to call the magpie one of "Australia's most highly-regarded songbirds" on their website.

People were quick to marvel at the bird's talent.

Instagram | ambikangela

Some comments on the video came in the forms of, "That's awesome! I'd give them a good helping of mince for that trick!" and, "Very intelligent birds indeed."

However, a lot of people pointed out that the video had much more worrying undertones.

To some, the video was representative of a much more pressing issue.

As Australia is currently facing one of its worst droughts for some time, there are swathes of fires plaguing Australia's New South Wales area. One person perfectly highlighted how telling it is of the situation that the magpie chose to mimic the sounds emitted by a fire engine:

"Remarkable, proof of the intelligence of these birds. I also see a Magpie, mimicking a fire siren in the Newcastle area, as a symptom of climate change. A metaphorical version of a 'canary in a coal mine'."

New South Wales has been forced to declare a state of emergency.

Instagram | australiafiresfund

NSW has actually declared a state of emergency three times in recent months, the previous two times being in December and November according to CNN.

The frequency of such a decision is testament to how in need of aid the location is, and how damaging the raging fires are to the landscape and to the occupants of the area.

The fires have already claimed many lives.

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Across the globe, thousands of crowd funding campaigns have been started to raise money to both help combat the fires, as well as to try and help those who have been affected by them.

There have been thousands seeking refuge offshore from the blazes, and New South Wales premier, Gladys Berejiklian, has confirmed that the situation continues to worsen, explaining:

"It's been confirmed today that there are two deceased persons in Cobargo. The police have confirmed that. A third person is missing with grave concerns for their safety, west of Narooma."

Hopefully, these people will get the help they require.

When you see this video, do you find it simply an amusing and interesting video showing the talents of one bird, or is it indicative of something more serious?

Either way, hopefully, the people of NSW will get the aid they need at this traumatic time.

If you'd like to donate to help Australia's relief efforts, there are many good, credible agencies, including the NSW RSPCA and the NSW Rural Fire Service. Donate to the RSPCA right here or to the NSW RFS right here.

h/t: CNN