What Animals Don't Have Ears

February 15, 2024

Ears are important for most animals because they allow them to hear sounds that can help them survive and hunt. But some animals don't have ears at all, including cephalopods (cuttlefishes, octopuses, and squids) and some reptiles and amphibians. These animals use other senses to detect sound.

Many lizards and snakes have no ears but can still hear. They use their skin and other sensory organs to pick up vibrations and tell where the sound is coming from. Snakes, for example, feel sound waves with their jawbone and inner ear. These vibrations are sent to their brain, allowing them to hear.

Most birds have ears but they aren't visible. They have small holes under their feathers on the sides of their head. Birds can also hear through their feet and wing flaps.

Some mammals, like baleen whales, don't have ears. They need a streamlined head for movement through water and external ears would impede this. However, they can hear by using their mouths and lungs.

Some animals, like puppies, kittens, and squirrels are born deaf but develop their hearing in the weeks after birth. Others, like bats, are born deaf but can still hear with their eyes closed. Other animals, such as salamanders, don't have any external ears but can still hear. They react to ground vibrations rather than air sounds and have a special gland that allows them to detect sound.


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