By - RickDoesntCare
Vultures have the strongest stomach acid of any animal of earth. Not only can they digest bones but it prevents them getting sick when they eat rotting corpses. Because of this Vultures play a vital role in the ecosystem by eating carcasses and preventing disease from spreading
Other scavengers like hyenas, jackals, etc also watch the sky for vultures. If vultures start circling the scavengers know to head in that direction because something is dead. Cheetahs hate it as they are often solitary (not 100% as male coalitions of brothers can form) and scare easily.
Vultures in India played a vital role in preventing rabies. When vultures eat a corpse, rabies goes away. When wild dogs eat a corpse, rabies spreads.
In the late 1990's, India legalized veterinary use of diclofenac, a drug similar to Advil. Over the next few years, because this chemical is incredibly lethal to old world vultures, vulture populations plummeted by around 99%. Because of this, wild dogs took over carrion disposal and rabies went rampant, now costing India billions of dollars per year.
This is also a huge issue for Zoroastrians since their death ritual involves carrion birds, like vultures, eating the dead bodies. The large Zoroastrian population in Mumbai is look at how to follow their beliefs without letting the bodies pile up.
Thanks for the bird fact 😊🤗
To add- a defense mechanism of theirs is the smell of their vomit, which is extra foul to ward of threatening predators.
Vultures also pee on their legs to keep cool
Vultures are like the opposite of flamingoes
Flamingos poop on their wings to keep warm?
Vultures blood is so acidic that rabies can't survive in them
Only mammals can carry rabies.
Flamingoes are pink because of their diet
That's so cool! Thanks for the bird fact 😊
Yeah they have reported a black flamingo in a herd of pink ones
They are also extremophiles!
Seeing wild flocks of flamingos in the high-altitude lagoons of the Bolivian altiplano was a neat surprise.
Swifts spend most of their lives flying. They eat and drink and mate in the air, they can even SLEEP while flying. The only time they truly come to the ground is for nesting.
That's wild! Tysm for the bird fact
Name doesn’t check out
wow what a cool bird!
Well, she does tour a lot.
Talk about the mile high club
Owls cannot swivel their eyes. Instead they move their heads completely around to see straight behind them.
Also, some cultures say they keep the souls of the dead.
That big patch of fuzz stretching out from its eyes? The souls of the dead clawing for escape
Owl eyes are roughly tube-shaped instead of spherical. All that extra eye gives them better (night) vision, but prevents their eyes from moving up/down or side-to-side. This is why owls evolved the ability to turn their heads so far around; so they can look at things without having to reposition their whole body.
Owls are weird
That is also a bird fact.
I think that's true for all birds. The part about not being to swivel their eyes, that is.
Most birds have eyes that point further to the side, so the two eyes together cover a large field of view. Owls have forward-facing eyes, so they have to swivel their heads further to see around them.
Crows can remember and recognize people.
It goes farther than that. I read in a book about a study conducted by catching and tagging crows. The crow catcher had to wear a mask so that birds wouldn't recognize them and attack (although they did attack the person whenever they were wearing the mask). During the study, the preformed a test where they had the person wear the mask flipped upside-down. The crows proceeded to fly upside down to get a better look at the mask and verify that it was the same person.
In Boston, 2003, there was a sudden influx in crow deaths. Locals were worried about a new strain of bird flu and called in some experts. It was soon obvious, from the crushed bodies and proximity to roads that all the dead crows were victims of vehicular collisions. Nevertheless, concerned about the sudden increase, the bodies were shipped to labs for further study. It was soon discovered (this is where it gets interesting), that based on the paint samples left on the crows that they were only being hit by trucks, never by cars. None of the ornithologists could produce a satisfactory hypothesis. Trucks were louder and should be easier to avoid right? So they set up cameras in places where the most deaths happened. As happens in many cases, the crows were converging to feed on roadkill. Being smart as they are the crows had established a lookout system where one crow would warn the others when a car approached so they wouldn't become roadkill in turn. The issue was that the Boston crow lookout never warned the others about the incoming trucks, he could only shout, "Caw."
Son of a bitch
Fuck you, that was as good as a u/shittymorph post. Take the free award and kindly fuck off.
My third grade teacher was wrong that female birds are boring colors and that male birds to all the attracting.
Birds see in ultraviolet light and female birds look, to other birds, exceptionally more colorful and amazing than they do to us.
And phalaropes are reversed, where the females are brighter colors than the males.
Geese sometimes fly upside down when they need to descend rapidly. It's called "whiffling."
Thanks for the bird fact 😄
Fairy-wrens sing to their eggs to teach a secret "password." If a newly hatched chick doesn't sing back the password, the mother knows it's a cuckoo chick and knows not to feed it.
Funny that they'd evolve such a complex method to identify cuckoos instead of just being able to tell what their own children are supposed to look like.
Some Birds are so smart lol
Female cuckoo birds lay their eggs in the nests of other birds, and when the egg hatches, the young cuckoo pushes all of the other eggs out of the nest.
The foster parents then raise the cuckoo as their own, often to the detriment of their own offspring.
Cowbirds do that too, but they don't care about how similar the eggs look to their host. They just monitor them and if the other birds remove the eggs, they trash the nests Mafia-style.
My bird fact is that I'm so glad the blue-footed booby exists, it's such a funny looking birb
And a funny bird name.
What about tits?
Ravens and wolves have a sort of partnership type thing, so ravens act as a sort of scout for wolves while hunting, when the ravens find an animal, dead or alive, they do a sort of call to alert the wolves of the animals location, then the wolves kill the animal, if its not dead already, eat what they need to eat and leave the rest for the ravens.
This is the most metal bird fact I've ever read.
The UK has more penguins than any other country (source: [RSPB](https://www.rspb.org.uk/about-the-rspb/about-us/how-the-rspb-is-run/annual-review/nature-conservation/our-work-in-the-overseas-territories/)).
Before the 1800s Europeans did not know that bird migration existed. They thought birds turned into vermin during the winter, flew to the moon, or hibernated in the mud under lakes. In 1822 some villagers in Germany shot down a stork that was impaled by an African spear, which led to naturalists figuring out that birds do in fact migrate to warmer climates during the winter
That must've been surreal
Some birds species sleep while they fly, half of their brain sleeps first and the other half later, that way a part of their brain can remain active to control their flight
Thanks for elaborationg on this. Someone else posted that they could fly in their sleep and I couldn't figure out how.
I think this is how I work.
Same for dolphins
the birds of the sea.
There is an island near the Falklands that has become a sort of defacto penguin sanctuary. It was covered in land mines during the brief war in the 80s but it's not valuable enough territory now for anyone to bother with trying to de-mine it. Penguins aren't heavy enough to set the mines off so they can move about freely and no humans go there to bother them because, well, mines.
That's really cool, is It like partially run by humans or is it just a completely independent ecosystem?
The impression I got from what I recall about it was it was basically just abandoned at this point, but I'm not certain of the details.
If you put two ostriches next to each other, their combined mass would be roughly twice that of an ostrich.
2 ostrich/football field
Australia lost a war to emus
Are there really many emus there?
Didn't China lose a bird war as well lol
I don't know about that. But they did enact a nationwide campaign to eradicate sparrows that were eating their crop seeds. They were successful. However, the sparrows were also eating insects that are crops. So without the sparrows huge swarms of insects annihilated the harvests and resulted in famine.
I have a cool little fact about that.
The emperor at the time decided to pay a small reward for anybody who turned in a dead sparrow. As a result of this, farmers began breeding the sparrows for a harvest and some people made this their whole job. It's one of my favorite loopholes ever.
I've heard of similar things all over. Crazy how long it takes for the government to learn.
I've heard of people doing the same kind of thing with rats.
Nuthatches have long rear toes, enabling them to hop down trees. This way they can find food that other birds miss.
Kiwis eggs are the largest birds eggs compared to body size, it takes up 20% of its mothers body, it's the equivalent of a human giving birth to a 3 year old child.
Certain birds have incredibly fast metabolisms and as a result basically just eat all day long, and they eat a lot. For example the Golden Crowned Kinglet eats about three times its body-weight worth of insects each day. For the average sized person that is the equivalent of about 27 large pizzas in a single day.
A simple life
In the continental U.S. alone, between 1.4 billion and 3.7 billion birds are killed by cats annually this stat is actually sad cause birds are very important creatures in circle of life
I always remember that one story of an island lighthouse keeper whose cat brought him a dead bird. Now, the man must've been an amateur ornithologist because instead of saying "thanks but ew" and disposing of the bird like the rest of us would've, he brought it to an ornithologist friend of his who excitedly confirmed that it was a brand-new species and went to the island to investigate.
~~The cat had killed all the birds. All of them.~~ Well, that cat and her kittens killed them all. There are only three stuffed specimens left tucked away in a museum somewhere and the bird seems to have been endemic to the island because it's never been found elsewhere. ~~That one damned cat drove a whole species extinct.~~
EDIT: Fact check, several cats.
The Central Park Effect.
So this is really cool! Twice a year, Central Park in Manhattan becomes the birding (aka bird-watching) center of the world for a few weeks. Birds on their migratory path from as far away as South America travel up and down the eastern seaboard as part of their mating and life cycle. When traveling over the eastern United States, these birds are looking down over an endless stretch of urban sprawl that starts in earnest in D.C., and has only a few green gaps until it rips past NYC.
And then you fly over Central Park in Manhattan and there's this HUGE greenspace, so why not swoop down and chill for a little while?
And that's exactly what happens. Bird enthusiasts rush to Central Park twice a year to see birds just passing through that might otherwise require a trip to Cuba or Panama or Guatemala (etc). There's a really interesting and fun irony to one of the densest urban environments in the world being home to some of the best bird watching on the planet at a couple specific times a year, but there you have it.
That's super cool!
The common city pigeon you can find pretty much anywhere in the world is not a wild animal. They are feral, because they are descended from domesticated pigeons that either escaped or were set loose. If you could catch a pigeon then with a little food and kindness you could make it love you the same way you could tame a stray cat.
Isn't it crazy that pigeons came before cities?
The official bird of the city of Madison, WI is the plastic pink flamingo. Like, lawn ornaments.
The titmouse is neither a tit or a mouse.
Crows are extremely smart, and if you are nice to them they will be nice to you and bring you gifts.
Yay! Half of a dead mouse!
Unlike mammals, birds don’t experience the “burning” effect of capsaicin, and as a result can eat the even hottest peppers without batting an eye.
That’s why they’ll treat bird seed and suet with hot peppers to deter squirrels.
Whoa that’s awesome! Hadn’t even heard about that
Birds are the preferred dispersal agent for pepper seeds, because if they eat pepper seeds they'll pass through their relatively short gut essentially unharmed and the bird will poop the seeds out probably far from the parent plant with a handy dose of fertilizer to boot. Mammals' guts are longer, and mammals are more likely to stay relatively close to the parent plant, so because that's less than ideal, peppers developed chemical warfare to deter the mammals, while being visually appealing to birds, since they lack the receptors that attach capsaicin to the burning sensation mammals experience.
And then some upright apes came along and said, "Wow, this hurts to eat. That's kind of fun. Maybe we can do an agriculture and make them hurt even more, and that would be more fun."
Eagles normally have two chicks. One is quite literally a back-up plan, and if the one born first is strongest, it will often kill the younger one.
In Golden Eagles the younger chick only has a 20% chance of survival.
Nature is a brutal place.
Reading that made me really sad
No I DONT 🤬🤬🤬🤬😡😡🤬
Ravens can mimic human voices better than parrots can.
Eagles are used by police to take down illegal drones
My favorite bird fact is that they can fly. I think it's amazing that they can use their wings to lift themselves into the air and stay there. It's like they have their own built-in airplane.
It's some really advanced technology that's for sure
Yet quite often they choose to walk.
Most of them, anyway.
There once used to exist a giant eagle in New Zealand which had a wingspan of 10ft across. This colossal eagle (called "Haarst's Eagle", or Hieraaetus Moorei) used to predate on the variety of giant elephant birds such as the Moa (which were big ground birds that looked not unlike Rheas today except stockier) that also used to exist on the island. The giant eagle lived up until as recently as 800 years ago and is thought to have gone extinct after the arrival of human drove (directly or indirectly) its prey to extinction.
The ducks at the Park are free. You can take them if you like. I have 20 in my backyard.
They don't want you to know it, but it's true! 🤓
No they're not. Migratory Bird Act.
those feral Muscovys aren't flying anywhere
The government drone technology is unbelievable these days
Pigeons sing in [5/4](https://freesound.org/people/dobroide/sounds/27931/) and [17/8](https://freesound.org/people/squashy555/sounds/319512/) time signature.
Those are bad time signatures
Early birds may get the worm, but night owls get both in one feast.
Early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese
Falcons can fly at 240mph
Crows can memorize human faces. If you mess with a crow, it will teach it’s friends that you are a danger and all it’s crow buddies will try to fuck you up when they see you.
Some birds can sleep half a brain at a time. One half of the brain stays awake, looking out for predators through one eye, while the other half sleeps. It's called "unihemispheric slow wave sleep."
Dolphins can do this too I think
Birds are the descendants of dinosaurs.
penguins can jump as high as 9 feet in the air
Did someone say birds 👀
Their respiratory system is wild. We breathe in and out from our lungs but birds have unidirectional lungs. They breatge into air sacs that dont do gas exchange. The next breath in pushes the first along and eventually over their lungs where they exchange gases. It exits into more air sacs until it gets pushed back out as an exhale. Using several air sacs allows for constant air flow over the exchange surfaces. This lets them take in way more oxygen to fuel flight muscles vs our brief pauses to exhale
Corvids exist and I love them.
One of Aesop's Fables, *The Crow and The Pitcher*, involves a crow putting rocks into a pitcher until the water level is high enough to drink from it. This "fable" has been confirmed in lab conditions, not only do corvids recognize water displacement, and that by putting objects in a pitcher the water level rises, but they also start putting smaller rocks into the pitcher as the water level rises and gets closer to the top.
Woah that really puts into perspective how smart they are
Parakeets - males have a blue nose
That a gathering of crows is a murder and a gathering of owls is a parliament.
Crows and Ravens are as intelligent as a 7 year old
Pigeons are one of the few birds that can suck water and drink with their heads down. Most birds have to scoop water and tilt their heads back.
It’s mourning dove, not morning dove. You’re welcome.
We just call them modos.
China once won a battle against birds because they thought birds were eating grains.
But it turns outs that was just a plan of birds. They acted like they lost the war. China's victory caused 43 million of Chinese to starve. Birds lost a battle but eventually won the war.
Ravens can speak (meaning mimic human language or other sounds) very well. Better than most people realize.
Bird is the word
I like the tongue thing with wood peckers I think it's cool
What's the tounge thing?
Their tounge goes around their skull so they don't get brain damage from hitting the tree
That's crazy lol, thanks for the bird fact 😄
Yeah no problem
Why this dude asking questions about American surveillance drones like they are real ?
Male mallard ducks have a green head, and the females are white spotted brown.
Canadian Geese mate for life
And they're tougher than hell!
The only thing tougher than Canada Gooses, is Canada Mooses
I would like to see a Canada Goose ride a Canada Moose into battle.
Fuck being anywhere near that in person.
Most of them can fly.
Pretty sure Magellanic Penguins can moo
Penguins have a gland in their head that desalinates the salt water they ingest.
And the salt comes out their beak (bill?)
Baby birds are called bees.
(From the comedy series: Look around you)
In US patriotic videos, when you hear an eagle screeching in the sky, it's really a hawk. Eagles dont make that sound. Their noise is more of a high click, not regal at all.
Here's a video with sound ckips:
Kiwi have tge shortest beaks of any known bird, when measured using the standard tip to nostril method.
Birds use quantum mechanics to navigate.
Ducks have curlicued penises that they keep inside their bodies except when they're mating, and then they use it like a harpoon.
Never flip it to someone bigger than you. It's dangerous.
I just learned how smart crows are! Thank you Reddit. Now I want one.
Some birds are poisonous, learned that the hard way
The Galapagos Finch started off as one bird then separate into 13 different finches with different beak size and shapes.
Is that the Darwin bird cos it's like specialized to different diets? I think I've heard of this before
You can rearrange all the countries in the world into [the shape of a chicken.](https://i.pinimg.com/originals/a2/18/21/a21821b774dda62412347c04d440489e.jpg)
Dinosaurs aren’t extinct! Birds are literally dinosaurs.
You likely see dinosaurs every day, and hell, it’s pretty popular to eat dinosaurs too.
If a bird smacks off your windshield and into the patrol car behind you, you could be pulled over for flipping a cop the bird.
My favorite bird fact is that they can fly!
Many birds see into the UV spectrum and they have patches of feathers that reflect UV light (which we can't see).
Another comment said that this was why female birds don't have bright colors. It's pretty neat
Ducks are violent rapists....
Also that they are related to dinosaurs
I think most people know Owl flight is almost silent. It's so crazy to me how quiet it is.
i saw a video a while back where they set up a ton of microphones around an owls flight. It's crazy silent.
BBC Earth is the one who did it. Compared it to a morning dove if I remember correctly. I love the smooth motion watching that clip.
I was lying n our picnic table one night watching meteor showers and just as I sat up an owl flew right over my head from a nearby tree. Didn’t hear a thing, scared the hell out of me. It’s because they have soft ruffles on the outer edges of their flight feathers.
They are technically dinosaurs, since the only true criterium of being a dinosaur is "being a decendant of the first dinosaur".
Hoatzin chicks have two claws on each wing that they use to climb around trees with. They lose them as adults.
They also have a digestive system that utilizes fermentation more similar to a cow than other birds, and apparently actually smell kind of like manure because of it.
Chickens can swallow a mouse whole.
As of 2003, the airspeed velocity of an unladen European swallow was 24 miles per hour.
You have to know these things to be a Redditor, you know.
The fact that vultures are bald so they can get their head up their preys arse and eat them from the inside out without getting their feathers dirty
That pigeons mate forever, and if one dies, the partner visits the site where the partner died until the grieving is over by finding another mate. Thats what i read.
Birds can see ultraviolet (UV) light.
Some species of crows have on occasion befriended a cat. Although it mat be a one sided friendship
That they're dinosaurs. Literal dinosaurs. Not just "descendants of dinosaurs." Actual living dinosaurs.
Really my favorite fun fact of any type. Means I get to say "we're having dinosaur for dinner!"
flamingoes can only eat when their heads are upside down
A group of crows is called a ‘murder’…
The peregrine falcon can fly up to 200mph (320km/h) as it dive bombs its prey. Badass!
They're dinosaurs. They're reptiles. They're more related to crocodiles than crocodiles are to lizards.
There are a few species where the female is more colourful, such as the belted kingfisher.
Male and female blue jays are virtually identical.
You know when people call you bird brain take it with happiness reason birds are really smart.
Shoe bill storks sound like machine guns.
Oh I've seen this one, it's freaky
They're also my favorite birb.
Favorite green heron fact is the neck is almost 100% hidden. One moment it looks like a small bird and then boom its like 4 times the height previously.
Make penguins sometimes have sex with corpses
They’re really birdy sometimes
Pigeons actually suck at building nests but try their best none the less to make a home
Birds are living dinosaurs.
Here's a two for one about birds breaking the law:
* Many gangs in Columbia were found to have birds with them. Their main jobs were to act like an alarm system. Many were trained to shout out certain words as codes. One case was even featured on *World's Dumbest*.
* A cockatoo helped out their pigeon comrades in Australia by destroying a shopping center's anti-bird spikes. Cockatoos have stronger beaks than pigeons. There's a video about it.
Penguins give rocks as gifts
There’s a bird called a Sungrebe, the males have pouches under their wings and they use them to carry their chicks away from danger. They can only fit 1 chick in each pouch though
some parrots like being petted because it makes them horny
Penguins are pretty morally bankrupt, mainly adelie penguins
Emus started a war. That's why they're my favorite bird.
Crows use coat hangers as a substitution for sticks for their bird nests. They also have been seeing using street lights to crack open nut shells. They place their nuts on the street while the light is red, fly away when its yellow, wait for the cars to run over an crack open the nuts when the light is green, and then they come back to get their lunch when the light is red again.
We've been ignoring female Birdsong for centuries.
Kiwis lay eggs that are almost the same size as them, it’s so uncomfortable being so heavily laiden with these massive eggs that until they’re ready to lay, females can be found wading and resting in water because it helps support the weight of the egg and relieve some pressure in their poor little bodies.
Also, since bird beaks used to be measured from tip to nostril rather than tip to face, and kiwis have their nostrils at the ends of their beaks to smell for prey in the dirt, they technically held the record for having one of the *shortest* beaks in the bird family.