Do Birds have taste buds?
In the past, it was thought that birds had a poorly developed sense of taste. Taste buds lie at the base of the tongue, in most species of birds. Some birds have taste buds on the inside of the tip of the lower and upper bills and there are several sites on the roof of the oropharynx, near the choana. In parrots, the taste buds are on the roof of the oropharynx on either side of the choana, and on the floor of the oropharynx at the front end of the laryngeal mound. Mallard ducks have less than 500 taste buds, compared to the 10,000 of a human and 17,000 in the rabbit. Birds do have a sense of taste, and do show definite taste preferences, as we all know! Sugar provides high energy for the high energy birds. For example, hummingbird feeders use sugar, but they get the rest of their nutritional needs from other sources, such as insects.