Grey seals can imitate human speech and song using the same mechanisms of speech formation as humans, researchers in Scotland have found.

Three young seals at the Scottish Oceans Institute at the University of St Andrews were monitored since birth to study their repertoire.

They were then trained to copy speech by changing how they form their sounds.

Researchers say the findings, published in the journal Current Biology, could contribute to new ways in which we study speech disorders.

Zola, one particularly musical seal, was said to have managed to copy up to ten notes of several melodies, including a rendition of the children's song "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star".

Another song that featured was the Star Wars theme tune.