Cranial kinesis facilitates quick retraction of stuck woodpecker beaks - Archive ouverte HAL Access content directly
Journal Articles Journal of Experimental Biology Year : 2022

Cranial kinesis facilitates quick retraction of stuck woodpecker beaks

(1, 2) , (1) , (1) , (2)
1
2

Abstract

Much like nails that are hammered into wood, the beaks of woodpeckers regularly get stuck upon impact. A kinematic video analysis of pecking by black woodpeckers shows how they manage to quickly withdraw their beaks, revealing a two-phase pattern: first a few degrees of beak-tip-down rotation about the nasofrontal hinge causes the tip of the upper beak to be retruded while its proximal end is lifted. Next, the head is lifted, causing beak-tip-up rotation about the nasofrontal hinge while the lower beak starts retruding and initiates the final freeing. We hypothesise that these consecutive actions, taking place in about 0.05 s, facilitate beak retraction by exploiting the presumably low frictional resistance between the upper and lower beak keratin surfaces, allowing them to slide past each other. It also demonstrates the counter-intuitive value of maintaining cranial kinesis in a species adapted to deliver forceful impacts.
Not file

Dates and versions

mnhn-03891751 , version 1 (09-12-2022)

Identifiers

Cite

Sam van Wassenbergh, Tim Andries, Evy Pauly, Anick Abourachid. Cranial kinesis facilitates quick retraction of stuck woodpecker beaks. Journal of Experimental Biology, 2022, 225 (5), ⟨10.1242/jeb.243787⟩. ⟨mnhn-03891751⟩

Collections

MNHN CNRS
0 View
0 Download

Altmetric

Share

Gmail Facebook Twitter LinkedIn More