The mystery of Chamaeleon Tongue


The Chamaeleon tongue has a spectacular ability to be shot for quite a distance to catch prey. 

This ability is a miracle determined by the extremely movable hyoid bone with a needle-like projection, on which the tongue is situated at rest, and two spectacular muscles.

The accelerator muscle squeezes the projection of the hyoid bone and catapults the tongue tip towards the prey; the retractor muscle retracts then the tongue back to the mouth cavity.

Original picture courtesy Jan Emmer

Author: Petr Nečas