Do snakes have ears? -
May 02, 2021 1 min, 1 sec

Yes and no, Sara Ruane, a herpetologist at Rutgers University in New Jersey, told Live Science.

"When you think about animals, whether it's a dog or a jack rabbit, they hear a noise in a different direction and shift their external ear in order to better capture that sound in case it happens again," Ruane said.

"An internal ear is the part where the actual nuts and bolts of hearing happen." Snakes only have the nuts and bolts part of the ear.

This enables snakes to hear vibrations, such as a predator creeping closer on the forest floor.

Due to this ear setup, snakes hear only a narrow range of frequencies.

That's sort of what snakes are hearing at higher frequencies.".

This narrow range of hearing isn't a problem for snakes, partly because they don't use vocalizations to communicate with each other.

The vocalizations they make, such as hissing or growling, are at higher frequencies than they hear at and are probably intended for bird and mammal predators, according to the study.

The bigger reason why snakes don't need sensitive hearing is because they rely on other senses.

So although they don't have a chance at out-hearing most other animals, "snakes are the chemosensory kings.".

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