Fallacy: bird bones are hollow

Is it true that bird bones are hollow? This might be a fallacy – a fallacy means that it is not true.

Bird bones are pneumatic. So are dentists’ drills and jackhammers. Vehicle air brakes and tyres are pneumatic. And vacuum pumps are pneumatic.

‘Pneuma’ is a Greek word for ‘wind’ or ‘breath.’ Pneumatic means that it contains, or is operated by, air or gas under pressure. It is compressed air or compressed gas. Air is a gas. Actually, air is a mixture of gases because it is 78% nitrogen and 21% oxygen, with the remaining 1% containing traces of water vapour, carbon dioxide, and argon. 

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Common Stingray

The Common Stingray (Dasyatis pastinaca) is a marine (saltwater) cartilaginous fish (without bones, like a shark). Instead of a bony skeleton, it has cartilage, which is the same substance as the human nose and human ears.

The Common Stingray is thin, flat, and diamond-shaped, but slightly wider than long (like a kite). It is pale-grey, brown or olive-green, with smooth skin. Its small mouth is located on its underside and its bulging eyes are close together on the top of its head. It has small blunt teeth. It has a long, tapering, whip-like tail with two dorsal fins and a venomous barb. It has five pairs of small gills, which enable it to breath underwater.

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What is the difference between a dewclaw and a spur?

What is the difference between a dewclaw and a spur? 

A dewclaw is a small digit on the foot of many mammals, birds, and reptiles. The dewclaw is at the back of each leg, above the ankle or foot. The dewclaw is mostly on the front feet, but can also be on the back feet. When the animal is standing it does not make contact with the ground.

Dogs, domestic cats, wild cats, lions, and cloven-hoofed animals, such as pigs and deer, have a dewclaw. Giraffes and horses do not have a dewclaw.

A spur is a bone covered in horn that grows out of an animal’s body. Spurs grow on the hind (back) feet. Some birds have spurs on the edge of their wings.

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Australian Lungfish

The Australian Lungfish (Neoceratodus forsteri) is also known as the Queensland Lungfish. It is a lobe-finned fish from Australia. It is one of the oldest living vertebrates on the planet.

The Australian Lungfish has a long, stout body with a flattened head and and paddle-shaped tail. It is olive-green or brown, with a pale-yellow underbelly. It has small eyes and a small mouth. Their large, bony scales have slime on them.

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African Marabou Stork

The African Marabou Stork (Leptoptilos crumeniferus) – often just called the Marabou – is a large bird in the Ciconiidae family. It is often called The Undertaker bird.

Its feathers are grey and white. Its soft, white tail feathers are known as marabou. It has a pink bald head and neck like a vulture with red spots and a long reddish-coloured pouch hanging from its neck, called a wattle or gular sac. It has a conical bill. It has long black legs.

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