Open main menu

A hindlimb is a posterior limb on an animal, especially the quadrupeds.[1] When referring to quadrupeds, the term hind leg is often instead used.


It is located on the limb of an animal. Hindlimbs are present in a large number of quadrupeds. Though it is a posterior limb, it can cause lameness in some animals. The way of walking through hindlimbs are called bipedalism.

Benefits of hindlimbsEdit

Hindlimbs are helpful in many ways, some examples are:


Frogs can easily adapt at the surroundings using hindlimbs. The main reason is it can jump high to easily escape to its predator and also to catch preys. It can perform some tricks using the hindlimbs. Frogs have 4 digits in fore limb while hindlimb have 5 digits. All digits are without nails.


All birds walk using hindlimbs. They have the ability to dig in two opposite directions using the hindlimbs. They can easily find food that makes them adapt on their surroundings. A bird with a forelimb that is the most primitive is the Archaeopteryx. It adapts by using it but not capable of long-distance flights, the reason why it was extinct now. The fastest biped is the ostrich. It runs at 70 km/h.

Kangaroo ratsEdit

Bipedality in kangaroo rats are seen to be an agent of adaptation. Kangaroo rats are long jumpers that can jump up to 18 feet, (that is twice the highest possible long jump and also high jump).

Using hindlimbs they can survive a challenging ecosystem. They can easily find food and survive hindrances in the environment. Some species use hindlimbs for competition.

First bipedsEdit

The first vertebrate bipeds were the Bolosaurids, a group of prehistoric reptiles with no living relatives. The first one, Eudibamus, was a small, fast runner during the Permian Period.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Merriam Webster Dictionary-Hindlimb