Curiosities: Why do flamingos stand on one leg?

Por Eddy Montilla.

FLAMINGO

Flamingos are valued for their beautiful plumage and thin and long legs. If you go to a zoo, perhaps you can find some children trying to imitate them by standing on one leg. But we can do that for a couple of minutes only while flamingos do it for hours. This is one the moments when this question comes up: Why do flamingos stand on one leg? This question has been something like a puzzle to science for a long time. There are different theories about this case, but it seems that Matthew Anderson and Sarah Williams’s research can give us the most accurate answer till now. Flamingos stand on one leg to preserve body heat. What leads to this conclusion is that they stand on one leg far more often when they are standing in water than when standing on land because the more parts of their body are in the water the more heat they body loses.

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