An organism’s mouth allows it to take resources, such as food and water, into its body. In some organs the mouth serves sensory, manipulative and communication roles as well. For example, humans can detect tastes with their mouth, while animals such as dogs, birds and cats use their mouths to manipulate items. Additionally, many mammals and birds use their mouths to communicate with each other through languages and songs. Some animals use their mouths for part of the respiration process as well.Continue Reading
The mouths of animals vary greatly from one species to the next, reflecting its important role in the evolution of different species. An animal’s mouth is usually adapted for acquiring and processing its food. For example, carnivores have wide mouths equipped with sharp teeth, while filter-feeding whales have evolved comb-like structures to filter food from the water.
Most animals have a one-way digestive tract that features an intake — the mouth — and an exit, called the anus. However, some extremely simple organisms engage in two-way digestion, using their mouths for both the consumption of food and the elimination of waste.
Most living vertebrates have jaws that provide the structure for their mouths. The only living exceptions are lampreys and hagfish, and scientists study these creatures to help better understand the evolution of the vertebrate mouth. Scientists often call these primitive fish “living fossils” because they diverged from the rest of the vertebrates about 500 million years ago, and have changed relatively little sense then.Learn more about Human Anatomy
The alimentary canal, or digestive tract, is the pathway through the body that food and beverages take once they enter the mouth and go into the digestive system. The canal begins with the mouth and ends with the anus, and each organ has a different function.Full Answer >
Digestion begins first in the mouth, where food is chewed and broken down, according to WebMD. From there, food travels to the pharynx, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine, rectum and anus. Each organ plays a specific role in digestion as the body turns food into energy for survival.Full Answer >
The esophagus, also known as the food pipe, carries food from the mouth to the stomach. It is part of the digestive system and is approximately 10.5 inches long in fully grown adults.Full Answer >
According to Medline Plus, the body feature located between the nose and mouth is called the "philtrum." It consists of a groove in the skin and muscle. It can be wide, narrow, short, long, deep or shallow based on genetic background.Full Answer >