Q:

Where do birds go when it rains?

A:

Quick Answer

When rain arrives, most birds wait out the elements and rely on their water-repellent coats to help them do so. Birds, along with other warm-blooded animals, need to keep their body temperatures within a certain range to avoid becoming hypothermic. Birds have special fur or feathers that help to repel water, which keeps birds warm and dry.

Know More
Where do birds go when it rains?
Credit: kwanchaichaiudom iStock Getty Images

Full Answer

The water-repellent properties of birds’ coats essentially give them raincoats that help prevent them from being wet and cold. When rain hits the surface of the feathers or coat, it simply rolls off the surface without being absorbed into the skin, which can be dangerously chilling for birds.

To enhance the water-repelling capacities of their raincoats, many birds also have the unique ability to preen their coats with a layer of water-resistant oil. When rain arrives, birds tuck their bills into oil glands located near the base of their tails. These glands produce special oils that birds gather on their beaks then spread onto their coats. The oils produce a slick layer that prevents water from penetrating the surface of the feathers.

Some birds also have protection from rain in the form of soft downy fur, which serves the purpose of retaining body heat and keeps birds warm. Birds also have a third eyelid under their regular eyelids known as the nictitating membrane, which is used to protect their eyes while flying in the rain.

Learn more about Birds
Sources:

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What extinct birds were small and brown?

    A:

    Some small, brown extinct birds are the Eskimo curlew, the heath hen and the Santa Barbara song sparrow. All three are North American species that became extinct between the late-19th and mid-20th centuries.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What eats birds?

    A:

    While birds have many predators, the most common predators of birds are other birds. Other consumers of birds include mammals like large cats, snakes, insects and plants.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Why do birds migrate?

    A:

    Birds migrate to mate, search for food, escape harsh weather, evade predators and to flee from diseases. Birds also migrate to raise their young in a safe environment.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How long do birds live?

    A:

    The life expectancy of a bird depends on the species of bird. Environment also plays a role in the expected life span.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore