Here, from a recent BBC One program “Pets—wild at heart“, is a short but amazing video of a hamster storing food in its huge pouches, which apparently go all the way back to its hips. There’s an X-ray of the nomming beast, and information about how it keeps that stored food dry:
The amazing cheek pouch of the hamster
January 16, 2015 • 4:10 pm
23 thoughts on “The amazing cheek pouch of the hamster”
Hips!!! Wow. I hear people saying saying this or that food goes “straight to the hips” – now I can show them what that really looks like.
That would be so convenient for backpacking! Very cool!
I used to have rats and hamsters as a kid, hamsters are really the champions in the stashing department.
Pity the video doesn’t show the disgorging, as least as impressive as the stuffing.
Love the X-ray images.
Agreed about the disgorging – I think they use their forepaws more to unload the pouches. Amazing how dry the stashed noms are when they’re unloaded; imagine a human doing similar – the noms would be a slobbery mess.
My sister and I had hamsters when we were kids, and sometimes they’d stuff their cheek pouches so full that they had trouble fitting into the habi-trail tubes. But the clever rodents had it figured out – they’d just unload a few items until they could fit in the tube more readily.
That reminds me to use my gift card for dinner next week.
David Tennant (The Doctor) narrating – I think.
Yeah I tnought it sounded like Doctor #10 as well.
“The hamster, secure in its futuristic stasis pod, can use its exercise wheel to power a worm hole engine thingy that lets it do some sort of wibbly wobbly timey wimey thing to return back again and again to the time in which it had a meal that it particularly enjoyed.”
I was skeptical, but you are correct, Jeff.
Maru would like this.
Wow…I’ve know a couple of people that resemble this guy.
I wondered if he was going to fit in the tube. I lived the camera angle showing his cute little lips and nose as he carried the carrot.
I remember seeing a cute clip in a film from the 1940’s … a woman sizes up a man: “You’ve got no hips!” she exclaims. Now I know what she meant.
I read somewhere that if humans had cheeks this stretchy, we could fit 12 whole oranges into our mouths.
Then your buddies would slam into you just to make them ooze orange juice!
I once saw a golden retriever fit 4 tennis balls in his mouth at once.
I like to see the dog with a full mouth go for the next one.
So, does this explain Dizzy Gillespie? Is he really a hamster?
A fellow anatomy instructor once told me that Dizzy Gillespie had irreversibly stretched out or damaged his buccinator muscles, through improper embrasure/technique. Although the buccinator is not a muscle of mastication (it’s a muscle of facial expression), its action does help retain food in the mouth and keep it in place over/under the teeth to be chewed effectively. Apparently Mr. Gillespie had a lot of trouble keeping food and saliva in his mouth while eating, and was embarrassed to eat out in public at restaurants and such for this reason. ::completely anecdotal, haven’t confirmed the truth of this story::
The Dizzy Gillespie of rodents.
Lovely film, I hope the hamster doesn’t develop a cancer from all this X-raying.
Although they don’t live long 2/3 years I believe.