Water Droplets Jump Off A Gecko’s Skin Like Popping Popcorn

Water Droplets Jump Off A Gecko’s Skin Like Popping Popcorn
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Geckos have a neat superpower that allows it to stay dry at all times: water droplets basically get catapulted off their skin like popping popcorn. It’s pretty nuts to see the water launch in the air like that and also pretty gross to think of it as the sort of human equivalent of shooting out sweat from our bodies.

Here’s what it looks like up close:

Here’s New Scientist explaining the phenomenon:

Slow-motion video footage has shown naturally formed water droplets launching themselves away from a gecko’s body like popping popcorn.

The phenomenon has been seen previously on some insects and artificial surfaces, but never on geckos. Dubbed “geckovescence”, it is caused by a dense array of minuscule, hair-like structures called spinules, which cover the bodies of many geckos. This scaly microstructure is thought to be unique to these animals and seems to help them shed water.