Imagine having a bird as a pet that goes missing for years, and when it finally returns home, it speaks a new language. That’s precisely the story of an African parrot with a British accent.

The internet has a memory, and this week, it brought back the fantastic story of a family whose African Grey parrot disappeared from their Southern California home in 2014 speaking Spanish, as reported by The Guardian.

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This news made headlines around the world years ago, and now it’s making its rounds online again.

The African parrot returned home four years later

Nigel, the parrot, returned to its home in Torrance, California, four years later, thanks to a good samaritan. The Washington Post reported that Nigel’s owner, Darren Chick, had accepted the idea that he wouldn’t see his bird again.

As reported by the Daily Breeze of Torrance, everything changed when a Latina dog groomer named Julissa Sperling found the bird whistling in front of her house.

“He was singing and talking without control. He was barking like the dogs,” Sperling told the Daily Breeze. “I’m from Panama, and he was saying, ‘What happened?’ in Spanish.”

Sperling’s gut feeling told her it had an owner, so she set out to find them on the internet until she connected via Internet with an ad from Teresa Micco, who had been searching for a parrot.

Despite Nigel’s strong resemblance to Micco’s bird named Benjamin, she used a scanner on a microchip to make sure it was hers, but it didn’t reveal ownership information.

While looking for her own parrot, Micco discovered five misplaced birds

But Micco didn’t give up. She tracked the paper sales records to the Animal Lovers pet store in Torrance. Here, they kept track of dated information and found Chick’s address, eventually returning Nigel, the parrot, to his rightful owner, Chick.

But after their emotional reunion, Chick gave his bird back to Liza Smith Hernández, the family who cared for Nigel while he was away. Her grandparents purchased Nigel for $400 at a yard sale and gave him a new name: Morgan — in tribute to the renowned rum label. The bird learned Spanish from her Guatemalan-born grandfather, Ruben, and both shared a special connection.

In her message to the Daily Breeze, Hernández said her grandfather devoted particular attention to Morgan, exchanging classical tunes through whistling. Also, she mentioned Morgan’s ability to mimic the initial bars of “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly” theme. Morgan often combined the dogs’ names, so Lorro and Jerry became “Larry.”

This isn’t the first time this happens; last month, another gray parrot reunited with its family after three years in France

Stories sometimes repeat themselves, and another parrot in France went through a similar situation recently. This October, an African parrot reunited with its owners three years after someone stole it in France.

The bird squealed to the cops when a seller tried to sell it near the Old Port of Marseille. The New York Post reports that selling this species is a big no-no.

The report says the bird squawked: “Jako, Jako, Jako,” a classic parrot’s name in this European country. One cop remembered a friend who lost his parrot with the same name back in 2020. 

All that’s left to say is the gray parrots really do seem to enjoy studying abroad.