The epiglottis is a trianglular "leaf shaped" cartilage which sits at the base of the tongue towards the caudal end of the mouth. It is the first line defense for covering up the glottis- the hole of the pharynx which leads to the larynx and the trachea. It is somewhat hard and acts as a flap to close the glottis up when swallowing. The picture seen here shows a sheep tongue with the epiglottis pointed out.