Rescued "Bird Boy" Can't Talk, Only Chirps

Recently, Russian social workers rescued a 7-year-old boy who has been raised as a pet bird by his mother. The boy was found in a tiny two-bedroom apartment filled with cages of birds.

He's called "bird boy" by Russian media, and here's why:

Social worker Galina Volskaya, who helped rescue the "bird-boy" from his home in Kirovsky, Volgograd, told Russian newspaper Pravda that he was treated like another pet by his 31-year-old mother.

Because she never spoke to him, Ms Volskaya explained, the boy's only communication was with the birds he was surrounded by. "When you start talking to him," she said, "he chirps."

Russian authorities say the child was not physically harmed but is suffering from "Mowgli syndrome", named after the Jungle Book character raised by wild animals, and cannot engage in any normal human communication.

Pravda reported: "(His mother) had her own domestic birds and fed wild ones. (She) neither beat him nor left him without food. She just never talked to him. It was all the birds that communicated with the boy and taught him birds' language.

"He just chirps and when realising that he is not understood, starts to wave hands in the way birds winnow wings."


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The boy will probably be capable of developing relatively normally - granted he has a handicap of a few years. But the 'language expiration date', the point at which people stop being able to acquire language how they should as a child is puberty. He still has a ways to go and will be able to learn at the very least the basics of human communication. Granted, as children get older, their ability to learn new linguistic capabilities becomes less and less radical. A three year-old can learn something like two hundred words per day. He just won't have had all eight years, but still has three or four. I'm just glad they found him before it was too late; and thank god the mother wasn't crazy enough to beat him or anything.
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I'm saddened to think he's in an asylum now, likely without his family (yes, birds), but rather surrounded by random loons and the typically cold, insensitive employees. Ruinous intervention. Couldn't it have been enough to install a housekeeper and let this linguistic marvel develope?
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I think they proved that you can teach someone all the words in the world. And they may be able to remember them. But that putting those words together to form language. Thats something we have to develop early on. And cannot go back and teach. Cuz I remember them teaching the girl tons and tons of new words. And she made so much progress. But ultimately she came to a point where all she could do was learn words. Forming speech and sentences it just didnt happen.
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Odds are that the kid will never be function as a normal human being. I saw a special on the discovery channel or something like that. And there was this case of a girl in the 70's whos father had never allowed anyone to talk to her. And her brain just didnt develop at all. Her body developed physically but she kept the brain of a 8 month old or something like that. Scientist were trying to see if a baby who had never learned to communicate could be taught at a later age. And they learned from her that there is a key point in the cognitive and language development of a child where these bridges have to be built. And if they arent built during that certain time they never will be. So I dont think this child will have much luck. Its really sad though. The mom should be put in jail. I hope he can help aid psychologist and scientist who want to better understand this phenomena.
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