JAN 25, 2018 07:36 AM PST

Why do flamingos eat upside down?

3 2 471

Why do flamingos eat with their heads all wrapped around, you ask? Well, it's a good question and it all has to do with the fact that they're filter feeders. That means that when they walk around in the shallow waters of whatever salty body of water they're in, they're actually mixing up the little animals and nutrients that are in the mud. Flamingos will eat almost anything, from crustaceans, worms, algae, and insects, to organic debris, plant material, and even fish! But how do they gulp up all these goodies?

When a flamingo is feeding it will put its neck down under the water with its mouth essentially upside. It will then close its mouth and force the water through comb-like extensions on its beak using its tongue in order to push the water out while keeping all the food in. Because flamingos have become so good at this upside-down style of eating, if you compare a flamingo's beak to those of other birds, you will notice that they're reversed. In, fact, flamingos are some of the only animals that can move their top jaw while eating. Want to learn more about this unique animal's feeding habits? Watch the video!
About the Author
  • Kathryn is a curious world-traveller interested in the intersection between nature, culture, history, and people. She has worked for environmental education non-profits and is a Spanish/English interpreter.
You May Also Like
JUN 11, 2018
Videos
JUN 11, 2018
This is What Happens to the Body After Death
Death can be a taboo topic that most people don’t like discussing, but there’s undoubtedly a scientific interest in what happens to the body af
JUN 16, 2018
Videos
JUN 16, 2018
Stem Cells can Reverse Baldness
Researchers are developing ways to treat hair loss, which is a problem for many people for a variety of reasons.
JUN 25, 2018
Videos
JUN 25, 2018
Brain Games for Concussion Recovery?
When an athlete has suffered a concussion, the best medical advice is to rest, completely. No television, no reading, no bright lights, sometimes for two w
JUL 04, 2018
Videos
JUL 04, 2018
How Did Viruses Originate?
There is still a debate about whether or not viruses are a form of life, and we really don't know where they came from.
JUL 17, 2018
Videos
JUL 17, 2018
About That EM Drive Idea...
Traveling through space requires a lot of fuel, and this limitation defines just how far we can go. Physicists have been experimenting with the ‘impo
JUL 18, 2018
Videos
JUL 18, 2018
Brain Differences in Men and Women
Men and women are different, of that there is no doubt. In neuroscience, there has been a lot of research into these differences, as they relate to treatin
Loading Comments...