A Seal Singing the Star Wars Theme Song Goes Viral

These seals at the University of St Andrews show some amazing talent with their singing.
Irmak Bayrakdar

We know some animals are good at imitating other sounds and even learning new tricks, like birds such as the raven or the parrot, or fish like the dolphin.

Seals, on the other hand, are seen as more unique as they also feature voice cords like humans. Scientists were surprised to find that these seals could catch up the given melodies and sound much like humans.


Recent research done on seals residing at Scotland's University of St Andrews proves that not only seals can sing, but they can also be taught new melodies and sounds. As fun to watch as it is, recent research also leads the way to vocal education to other animals as well.


A team of scientists at the university, led by Vincent Janik, tried teaching seals new sounds and melodies to see if these seals can be taught. The team has been working with these seals since they were cubs.

Source: Unsplash/Amy Asher

Amanda Stansbury first started off with recording the sound seals already make, then she made the seals listen to specific parts of the recordings in order to get the tune she wanted to teach them.

When they could copy and copy the exact sounds, the team then made them listen to harder recordings and wanted them to climb higher notes and in return gave them rewarding treats and snacks. Stansbury states, "The seals though if I could make the same noise again, I’d get a fish."


Being both smart and cute, seals steal the heart of most with their tricks when they clap, swim, dive and bark but little did we know they can actually be taught to sing with a little bit of training.

There are three seals in the research, in total, but one was a particularly talented singer, singing ‘’Star Wars Theme Song’’ and even the children’s classic, ‘’Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’’ and a cute video of Zola the Seal stole the Internet.