A Natural Phenomenon
Animals That Can Walk on Water
by Anaka Srinivas, age 10
Walking on water may seem impossible, but some animals are able to do it. Surprisingly, even large, heavy animals can! While you would expect that only small, light animals could do this balancing act, but animals like geese and lizards can too – as long as they are quick. Their flat feet push on water and break through the surface. The water underneath their feet acts like a spring and pushes them back up just long enough to take another step and not sink.
Smaller animals can walk on water too, but they do it a little differently, with less dashing and splashing. They’re pretty light, so they don’t break the water surface as easily. Instead, their legs just make tiny dents in the water which allow them to walk on water almost as if they were walking on land.
If you’re wondering why the water surface doesn’t break, it’s because of molecules, or building blocks, that make up almost everything. Responsible for surface tension, molecules on top of the water don’t have anything above them to hold onto, so they hold onto each other even tighter. The surface tension isn’t strong enough to hold up heavy animals but it is strong enough for smaller ones.
Not all animals can walk on water – humans certainly can’t – but some are made with the perfect balance to tread the water.
[Source: Ranger Rick]