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Salamander's cold-proof tongue

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Uploaded on Oct 11, 2011

The ballistic-tongued salamander, Hydromantes platycephalus, can project its tongue 80% of its body length in about 15 milliseconds. Because the tongue is accelerated by elastic recoil, like a bow and arrow, it can be shot even when the salamander is freezing cold and its muscles contract slowly. This species lives at high elevation in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California and is active at freezing temperatures, so a cold-proof tongue projection mechanism is an asset.

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