Science Fact of the Week 49 - The Brazilian Pygmy Gecko
The Brazilian Pygmy Gecko (Coleodactylus amazonicus) is a tiny lizard, measuring between just 2 - 4 cm. This little gecko is found in South America, mainly in Brazil, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname and Bolivia - and deep in the Amazon Rainforest. It rains constantly there, which is unfortunate because being so small means that being hit by a raindrop could be potentially fatal. But this extraordinary creature has 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 that being water proof 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. Sometimes, the Pygmy Gecko is called the Unsinkable Gecko. Here is a video, taken from BBC's Life series, showing the gecko "float" on water. Amazing!