by Native Foods Cafe
In continuing with the celebration of the re-opening of Native Foods Cafe Palm Springs, we have some more cool desert facts for you guys! Today we are presenting the Phainopepla Bird. Besides being pretty darn cute, they are kinda really cool too:
- Its name is from the Greek phain pepla meaning "shining robe" in reference to the male's plumage.
- Phainopepla have a specialized gizzard that shucks berry skins off the fruit and packs the skins separately from the rest of the fruit into the intestines for more efficient digestion. So far this is the only known bird able to do this.
- The eggs are incubated by both the male and female, which about takes fifteen days. The chicks are then reared by the parents for up to nineteen more days.
- The Phainopepla can imitate the calls of twelve other species!
- The Phainopepla has a very special relationship with Desert Mistletoe, a parasitic plant that grows on the branches of other trees. It eats the berries of the mistletoe, and cannot digest the seeds. So if it happens to defecate on a branch or tree, the seeds can then germinate and produce a whole new crop of mistletoe berries, therefore ensuring its next meal.... amazing!
- The Cahuilla Indians used to ground up the mistletoe berries and use the powder to treat wounds and as a natural Visine to treat irritated eyes.
Palm Springs is such a cool place with an amazing desert ecosystem.... And you can come explore it for yourself this weekend! Enter our Win a Weekend Stay in Palm Springs Contest on Facebook! It is for this weekend to celebrate the re-opening of Native Foods Cafe Palm Springs. But hurry, contest ends tonight at midnight!
Native Foods Cafe, Native Foods Cafe Palm Springs, vegan, vegan food, vegan restaurant, facebook contest, phainopepla bird, mistletoe berry