In the Scolopacidae, which includes the sandpipers and snipe, there is a significant enlargement of the neural apparatus subserving the behaviour of probing which is the preferred feeding strategy of this family of birds. Along with a sophisticated motor arrangement which allows fine manipulation by the tip of the bill without abduction of the mandibles, there is an obvious expansion of the forebrain area devoted to the trigeminal innervation of receptor-rich bill tip. This ''trigeminal expansion'' forms a visible bulge on the surface of the brains of the Scolopacidae but not on the brains of related shorebirds in the Charadriidae; this difference would be evident in fossil endocast material and could provide new information on the evolution of the avian brain.

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