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lejun | all galleries >> "Birdseye View" >> Wily Woodpeckers >> Red-bellied Woodpecker > Details of head, beak, and tongue
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11-OCT-2011 Lejun

Details of head, beak, and tongue

Copyright Lewis Scharpf

Adult Male showing detail of tongue.
Once the woodpecker has located grubs or other insects, it skewers the prey with its tongue.
The tip of the tongue is hard with a sharp point. After the tip penetrates the soft body of a grub or soft insect, the tiny rear-facing barbs grab hold as the woodpecker withdraws its tongue with the insect impaled on it.
(Courtesy of and to see more detail see
Banded and released unharmed by certified master bird bander, Fred Bassett, Fort Morgan, Alabama

Nikon D200 ,AF-S Nikkor 105mm f/2.8
1/640s f/8.0 at 105.0mm iso400 full exif

other sizes: small medium large original auto