I love stuff like this.
Scientists at UCLA have identified some 2000 genes in the brains of Zebra finch that are significantly related to singing. Whoa. First, that's sort of an amazing number of singing genes, isn't it? Second, who knew major universities had scientists on staff to count them? And third, that discovery may aid in the understanding of human speech disorders like stuttering, and speech-related conditions arising from autism or strokes. It's a remarkable story of where you can end up when you're on your way to someplace else; not unlike my search for car keys that led me to inventing a great way to refill my bird feeder without spilling Nyjer seed all over the place. But I digress.
The take away here is that everything is related to everything, sometimes in obvious ways and other times not so much. History is filled with breakthroughs found "on the way to someplace else" (e.g. penicillin, plastic, popsicles...) and songbirds that may teach us about speech disorders are just one more reminder of the importance of being open to possibilities. So the next time you're watching those pretty goldfinch dining on that little tube bird feeder in your backyard, widen your viewable area. Maybe you'll notice something else that enriches your life.
It's all out there, we just have to be sharp enough to notice, and open minded enough to imagine the possibilities.