Hummingbirds turned savoury into sweet to taste nectar

August 22, 2014 5:34 PM

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It's the strangest sweet tooth in the world. Birds lost the ability to taste sugars, but nectar-feeding hummingbirds re-evolved the capacity by repurposing receptors used to taste savoury food.

To differentiate between tastes, receptors on the surface of taste buds on the tongue, known as T1Rs, bind to molecules in certain foods, triggering a neurological response.

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