Learn Bird Dactyly!

The word datyly is not a word many of us have actually said, but it is a word that we have all thought about without knowing the word.  Have you ever wondering how many toes or fingers a monkey has, or why a chicken has three toes pointing forward and one toe pointing backwards.  The orientation of toes and fingers on an animal is referred to as dactyly.  Animals are grouped based on the way their digits are oriented and dactyly is broken down in detail for birds, mammals and genetic defects, among a few other things.  In this article we break down the dactyly of birds, but if you wanted to learn more about mammal dactyly then you can head of to them mammal center in the animal kingdom.

Here is the breakdown of dactyly in birds:

Anisodactyly- Three toes forward and one toe back.

Syndactyly- Similar to Anisodactyly, but two or all three of the forward facing toes are fused.

Zygodactyly- Two toes facing forward and one toe facing back.

Heterodactyly- This is the same as Zygodactyly, but the toes are flipped. So digits 3 and 4 face forward.

Pamprodactyly- All four toes face forward.


Bird feet a very interesting and all birds have evolved some unique styles to help them survive better in their environments.  To learn more about the unique features of birds then head to our bird center!



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