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Animals That Walk on Water

It’s not magic … it’s physics. More than 1,200 species of animals have evolved the ability to walk on water, from tiny insects and spiders to larger animals such as birds, reptiles, and even mammals.

Here are few:

Double-crested Basilisk

Dubbed the Jesus lizard, a double-crested basilisk runs across water in Santa Rita, Costa Rica, in 2008. Photo: Bence Mate, Nature Picture Library/Corbis

Water Strider

Water striders in Cantabria, Spain. Photo: Juan Carlos Munoz, age fotostock Spain, S.L./Alamy

Fishing Spider

A fishing spider can row, gallop, and even sail across the water. Photo: Visuals Unlimited/Corbis

Pigmy Gecko

The pigmy gecko is so small that being hit by a raindrop could be potentially fatal. It evolved a hydrophobic skin (which repels water just like a waterproof jacket), thus protecting it from rain and potentially dangerous shallow puddles. It is so good at being waterproof that it can actually run across the surface of the water and is virtually unsinkable. The little gecko doesn’t sink because of water surface tension.

Western Grebe

Western grebes “rush” in Upper Klamath Lake, Oregon, in 2012. Photo: Paul Souders, Corbis

Bottlenose Dolphin

A dolphin along the south Australian coast near Adelaide are exhibiting the tail-walking behavior. Photo: Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society

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