Herons have special feathers that break up into powder. They rub this into feathers that are sticky with slime from feeding on eels. The resulting sticky balls are then removed with tiny comb-like teeth on the middle claw of each foot.

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Source: https://www.pitara.com/non-fiction-for-kids/did-you-know-for-kids/herons-have-special-feathers-that-break-up/

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