Geckos can run straight up a wall, but it’s their ability to run across water that makes them truly weird. Multiple animals can stick on vertical surfaces, after all. And yes, some can run on top of water—but not many that are as big as geckos. These little lizards have to combine three separate strategies into one unified motion that scientists think might be unique in the animal kingdom.
A group of biologists from universities around the world discovered the phenomenon when one of them happened to catch video evidence while on vacation in Singapore. It was such a surprise that geckos could run on the surface of water that they decided to study it in more depth. They published their results in the journal Current Biology, and to really understand why they’re so unusual we have to geek out a little.
Species - Process - Evolving—want - Water - Tactics
If you—a hypothetical species in the process of evolving—want to walk on water, there are two main tactics you can take. One is to be so small that you can use the high surface tension of water to float on the top. This is how water skitters and spiders do it. If you look closely...