And since this was just the one whale, the researchers are unsure whether there are more copy-cat killer whales in the wild.
An orca, or killer whale, in France can vocalize several English words, suggesting the species is capable of mimicking human speech.
The study also found that Wilkie was able to imitate unfamiliar sounds from other orcas, including the sound of blowing raspberries.
In the wild, killer whales live in pods and are known to have different dialects, but there has been intense debate in the scientific community around how this came to be.
"You can not pick a word that is very complicated because then I think you are asking too much - we wanted things that were short but were also distinctive", Josep Call, a professor in evolutionary origins of mind at the University of St. Andrews, told The Guardian. "We thought what would be really convincing is to present them with something that is not in their repertoire - and in this case "hello" [is] not what a killer whale would say".
"They have even been known to imitate bottlenose dolphins and sea lions", said Dr Abramson. "There is no evidence yet now to prove that the ocra understand "hello", added Call.
"The evidence that killer whales can show vocal learning provides us with a missing piece of understanding about their lives in the wild", Rendell wrote.
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An orca performs on August 11, 2013, at the Marineland animal exhibition park in the French Riviera city of Antibes, southeastern France. Results showed that Wilkie made "recognizable copies" of the sounds, both human and orca, relatively quickly.
As she learnt to copy commands, she was trained to imitate voices of familiar ocra sounds made by her three-year-old calf Moana. While humans use the larynx to speak, whales produce sounds through their nasal passages using bursts of air. You might be surprised by what the whale says back.
A new study, Wednesday in the journal "Proceedings of the Royal Society B" and led by the Complutense University of Madrid, found orcas have the ability to learn and mimic human language. The female orca, who was born in captivity and has two sons, learned to copy sounds and words. In fact, two human utterances and all of the human-produced orca sounds were managed on the first attempt.
But he remains hopeful, saying that future research could be developed to explore if it was possible for whales to comprehend the sounds they are making.
Remarkably, field observations of killer whales have documented the existence of group-differentiated vocal dialects that are often referred to as traditions or cultures and are hypothesized to be acquired non-genetically.
Diana Reiss, an expert in dolphin communication and professor of psychology at Hunter College, City University of NY, welcomed the research, noting that it extends our understanding of orcas' vocal abilities, with Wikie able to apply a "copy" command learned for imitation of actions to imitation of sounds.