MARVEL OF EVOLUTION

MARVEL OF EVOLUTION

from 250.00

I've been fortunate to be able to photograph lots of toucans but I never cease to be amazed at them, particularly Costa Rica's Keel-billed Toucan. If we set out today to design the perfect rainforest bird and came up with this guy, people would say it was over the top! Yet all of these overdone features have their functions.

The colors help with mate attraction and species distinction in the forest. And that crazy beak that looks so unwieldy helps this heavy-bodied bird to snip fruits off the ends of branches and to forage in crevices for insects and lizards and even to reach into other birds' nests to eat eggs and chicks.

Most surprisingly, the beak also contains lots of blood vessels which allow the bird to help to regulate its body temperature. On a hot rainforest day, the bird will move blood out into the vessels of the beak, making more surface area to help keep the bird cool.

Amazing!

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