Jesus Lizard


Some animals eat other animals. Some animals eat only vegetation. Some animals only eat insects. Some animals (humans) choose to not eat animals because they love animals so much they don’t want any of them to die just so that human can have a yummy hamburger.

Animals want to stay alive as much as humans. We know this because Mother Nature has equipped so many of them with specialized skills.  Hagfish slime and squid ink when threatened, Opossums play dead (very well, ask your mom about the one she found in the front yard in Tallahassee), Texas Horned Lizards shoots blood out of it’s eyes, porcupines have quills, Skunks stink, chameleons change their skin color, Electric Eels dispatch a high voltage charge to keep predators away. The Gerenuk stands very still and then slowly slinks away from predators. Squirrels will chew up shedded rattlesnake skin and spread it on their fur, so the snakes only smell other snakes. The Arctic Fulmar is a sea bird who projectile vomits on predatory birds.

And then there are the animals who SCRAM! Like the Jesus Lizard. I know what you are thinking, they must be named after the 90’s alternative rock group, “The Jesus Lizard.” But actually, it’s the other way around: the alternative-rock group got their name from the Basilisk lizard known for it’s ability to run on water.

Their long toes and feet-skin fringe help them increase the surface area on the top of the water. They smack their feet super hard against the water and creating an air pocket which keeps them from sinking. But they have to keep up their speed or they will sink and probably be eaten by a fish. It’s quite a daring escape! You gotta see this for yourself: