Harrison Farm

for now, the only thing we're growing on this farm is kids - not the goat variety

Tongues & Bird Brains

woodpecker

Carman & Sudoku attended an educational program at our local nature center yesterday. The program was about the endangered red wolf and the local revitalization effort. When I asked about what they learned at the program, they were excited to tell me about woodpeckers - not red wolves.

The woodpecker, as you might already know, has a very long tongue that it sticks deep into the holes it has pecked to find those tasty grubs and bugs. Do you know what the tongue is doing while the woodpecker is pecking? The long tongue is housed up in the woodpecker's head and wrapped around its brain casing. This stabilizes the brain from the force of the pecking. Otherwise, the brain would be joggled and jerked around too much during pecking.

Very cool. But it gives me a headache thinking about it.

Thanks for flickr's Noel Lee for this photo.

3 Comments

  1. so this birds brain is just open to the air?

  2. Milkmaid

    November 30, 2007 at 6:53 pm

    Probably not the brain but the brain casing would be open to the air. Wild, huh?

  3. Wow. I did not know that.

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