The amazing leggy lily-trotters


The wading birds known as jacanas are nick-named “lily-trotters” for their ability to hop over lily pads. They’re also known as “Jesus birds,” because they appear to be walking on water, made possible only by their expansive feet.


Jacanas are native to Asia, Africa, South and Central America, and Australia.


Jacanas are unusual birds in that the females are typically larger than the males and the males are responsible for parenting by brooding the eggs. They keeps the eggs dry and warm, not by sitting on them, but sliding the eggs under each wing.

That might look like a poor little waterbird with a horrifying number of extra legs but those are its babies’ legs, dangling from its chest.