Explore the year a word first appeared. Dictionary Entries near head-in-the-sand heading course heading joint heading stone head-in-the-sand head joint headkerchief head kidney. Statistics for head-in-the-sand Look-up Popularity. Time Traveler for head-in-the-sand The first known use of head-in-the-sand was in See more words from the same year. More from Merriam-Webster on head-in-the-sand Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with head-in-the-sand. Comments on head-in-the-sand What made you want to look up head-in-the-sand? Get Word of the Day daily email!
Test Your Vocabulary. Love words? Need even more definitions? Ask the Editors On Contractions of Multiple Words You all would not have guessed some of these A Look at Uncommon Onomatopoeia Some imitative words are more surprising than others Literally How to use a word that literally drives some people nuts. Is Singular 'They' a Better Choice? Have you ever heard someone say that someone has their head buried in the sand? Do they mean that another person has literally buried their head in a hole in the ground and covered it with sand?
Of course not! What in the world are they talking about then? When people say someone has their head buried in the sand , they are claiming that the person is ignoring obvious facts or refusing to accept advice, hoping that simply denying the existence of a problem will make it go away. This popular metaphor is believed to have originated with observations of ostriches that appear to bury their heads in the sand to avoid predators.
Some people think this behavior results from the fact that ostriches are so stupid that they believe burying their heads will make them invisible to predators. In other words, if they can't see the predators, then the predators can't see them.
Animal experts, however, will tell you that this belief that ostriches bury their heads in the sand to avoid predators is nothing more than a myth. After all, if an ostrich buried its head in the sand , it would soon die of asphyxiation. Given what we know about ostriches, though, it's easy to see how this myth got started. Ostriches are the largest and heaviest living birds in the world. Despite standing seven to nine feet tall and weighing as much as pounds, these birds have relatively small heads.
When nesting, they dig shallow holes in the ground to use as nests for their eggs.
For more from Kim, go to barefootcoaching. This list is not FDA-approved. Test Your Vocabulary. Maybe you could visit a zoo and see one in person. Share Wonderopolis. Test your vocabulary with our question quiz! These words appear in red, and are graded with stars.
They use their beaks to turn their eggs several times each day. From a distance , an ostrich leaning into a hole to turn an egg could easily look like it's burying its head in the sand! This myth could also have arisen from a couple of other ostrich behaviors. For example, when ostriches eat plants along the ground, they could easily look like they've buried their heads in the sand , especially from a distance. Likewise, ostriches often lie down flat on the ground when they feel threatened. From a distance , all that's visible is their large body, leading some to think that the rest may be buried.
Even though they get a bad rap, ostriches are very interesting birds. Native to Africa, they tend to roam savanna and desert areas, grazing on plants alongside giraffes and zebras. Like camels, ostriches can also tolerate high temperatures and go without water for days. Even though they're birds, ostriches cannot fly. Their bodies are simply too large to permit flight. They can, however, run like the wind! Their long, powerful legs can maintain a steady speed of over 30 miles per hour, with short bursts of up to 43 miles per hour.
Their wings, while useless for flight, do help them to keep their balance when they run. Get your head out of the sand and find a friend or family member to help you explore the following activities:. What made you ask this question wonderopolis? Also ostriches are really funny when they do their defense mechanism and flop around like a dead fish or known as the ostrich dance look it up on youtube. Ostrich Dance-Youtube.
Check out the Wonder Bank to see some and submit your own! So i refuse to label the behavior as a "myth".. Thanks for sharing all that info with us! We agree with your "incomplete reference" comment.
Thanks, Asix! It's true. Those poor ostriches are getting a bad reputation.
Glad we could help clear things up! Hi, Anne! Users used to be able to submit photos to the Media Gallery. We have since removed the photos since they were not related to the Wonder. Thanks for pointing that out! Great to hear, FierHeat! We would love to find out! We agree, FireHeart! Maybe you could visit a zoo and see one in person. Think twice with the ostrich farm Dragon Slayer. Good afternoon, I am a Dragon named NightClaws!
There are many things to consider before starting any type of farm. Thanks for joining the discussion! Howdy, Some body! Good afternoon, Nolan! Bill Knaus Ed. Friend me on Faceook. The Ostrich Trap Break free from parasitic social fears and dark moods. When your main wishes fall prey to imaginary social threats, you risk living a gloomy, self-restricted, life as suggested by the following: The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation. Bill Knaus.
Submitted by Anonymous on June 29, - am. What the When did this happen?
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