Birds are among the most curious animals in the world. There are at least 10,000 species of birds worldwide, both flying and flightless. Birds generally have feathers, beak, and wings. They can lay their eggs on nests or care for them on their feet. Suffice it to say; there are many things that we don’t know about these creatures yet. But here are some of the most interesting facts about them:
There are at least 340 species of hummingbirds
From school, we are taught that one of the most important hummingbird facts is that they’re the smallest among birds. But what we weren’t usually taught was that there are at least 340 species of these small pollinators around. All of these species are only found in the Western Hemisphere, with half of them spending their time mostly in Central America and Mexico.
One of the most common species is the ruby-throated hummingbird. Usually found in the United States, this species is attracted to native plants with long, tubular flowers. Nectar feeders are also a great way to entice them to your backyard. Males have bright reddish-orange throat feathers with dull green ones on the head.
Chicken is the most common species of birds
At any given moment, there are at least 50 million chickens worldwide. Living free-range or cooped up in poultry houses. Hence, they’re the most common species of birds. We use chicken for their meat, as well as eggs, and consume about 31 kgs of chicken meat per year per person.
While chicken wins on the domesticated front, on the wild sild, the red-billed weaver is thought to be the most common species. Males of this type usually have a red bill while females sport brown feathers all the way through. They’re sized like a sparrow, with most living in sub-Saharan Africa.
Ostriches have three stomachs
Yep, you read that right. You may have previously known that the ostrich is the largest bird in the world. They’re also flightless, which means they have lost the ability to fly at one point in their evolution. Ostriches have three stomachs, which means like humans, they excrete urine and feces separately. They’re the only species to do so among birds as well.
Because they’re majestic birds, you don’t want to threaten them. Ostriches have evolved their legs to be so powerful that they can kill a person or even a mountain lion just by forward kicking. Another curious thing about ostriches is that they’re the only species that are didactyl. That means they only have two toes in afoot.
Ravens are capable of mimicking human sounds more than parrots
Thought parrots are smart? Well, they are but not so much as ravens. Ravens, when domesticated, or at least have contact with civilization, are able to mimic several human sounds as well as the ambient noises around them like revving vehicles, toilet flushing, among others. There are even instances where ravens can call for help.
In the wild, it is noted that ravens actually mimic other predators so that they can trace the exact location of food. They also call foxes and wolves when they can’t tear down their own food, utilizing their howls to attract them. In recent studies involving the birds, the findings state that they have cognition at par with humans and other primates on problem-solving skills.
Learning about birds is always a fun time. With more time spent on our homes today because of the quarantine, teaching your kids with some random facts will not only nourish their brain, it will also keep their interest. You don’t know, with you spouting off bird facts on your child/children on one lazy afternoon, maybe it will be the precursor for them finding their passion.