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Why do snakes stick out their tongues?

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βˆ™ 2016-10-12 12:31:42

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A snake sticks out its tongue to collect data for its Jacobson's Organ, an organ strategically located in front of the roof of the snake's mouth that functions as a chemical receptor. Each and every time the snake flicks out its forked tongue, it snares chemical particles in the air, which latch onto, or dissolve in, the moisture of the snake's tongue. Once the snake reels in its tongue, it inserts the tips of the forked tongue into the two awaiting openings of the Jacobson's organ where the particles, especially those of animal body odors, are identified, analyzed, and acted upon (if a nearby animal is potential food, or perhaps an enemy). Male snakes also use their tongues as part of a courting ritual, that is, the process by which they figure out if a certain female snake is interested in mating with them. The male snake jerks his body around, snapping his tongue in and out, and if the female ignores him, he knows to keep looking for a suitable partner. If she responds favorably, he's found his mate.

2016-10-12 12:31:42
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Related Questions

Why do lizards stick their tongues out?

Lizards, like snakes, stick their tongues out to catch scents in the air.

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This is how they smell

Do snakes smell from their tongues?

Yes they do

Why do sleeping dogs stick out their tongues?

this way they can stay cool, when they get hot, they stick they tongues out to cool down

Why do snakes have long tongues?

Snakes have long tongues because that is how they smell and see. They use the tongue as one of their senses; that is why it is always going in and out of their mouth.

Can alligators stick their tongues out?


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All of them, as far as I know. The olfactory organs of a snake are located in its mouth, and it sticks out its tongue to smell/taste the air.

Do garter snakes have forked tongs?

Yes. All snakes have forked tongues.

Do crocodiles have split tongues?

No, snakes do though! =)

WHY crocodile stick out its tongue?

Crocodiles cannot stick out their tongues. Their tongues are attached to the bottom of there mouths, good as well otherwise they could accidently bite their tongues. Ouch!

Can a lion stick out its tongue?

Yes, lions can stick their tongues out!

Can a crocodiel stick his tongue out?

No, crocodiles can't stick out their tongues.

Why do whales stick out their tongues?

because they can

Do bears stick their tongues out?

Yes they do.

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How do snakes sample air?

They actually taste the air with their tongues. When they bring the tongues into their mouths, the tongues press against sense organs in the head.

Why do snakes have forked tongues?

they eat to many potatoes