Feb 12 2010
If you thought we were done with bird anatomy because we reached the tail last week, think again.
There are plenty of obscure anatomy words I haven’t covered yet. For instance, what about axillaries?
Axillaries are the bird’s armpits, circled here in yellow.
Usually they are unremarkable because they match the wing color but every once in a while there’s a surprise. Black-bellied plovers and rose-breasted grosbeaks are two examples. The American robin is another.
If you hadn’t seen this picture would you have known that the orange color of the robin’s breast extends to its axillaries?
Marcy Cunkelman snapped this photo at just the right moment.
(photo by Marcy Cunkelman)