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Home  >  Cool Critters  >  Alaska Ecology Cards  >  Bugs
Water Bear 

Traits: Tiny to microscopic invertebrate animal. It is chubby with eight short legs, having four to eight claws on each leg; it can survive for years in an inactive state when conditions are bad.

Habitat: In the water film around mosses and lichens

Foods: Fluids from inside the cells of mosses and lichens

Eaten by: Roundworms, centipedes, other invertebrates

Do You Know? Most of a water bear's life is spent in a dried, desiccated state. When water is available, it swells to four to five times its dried-up size.

Special thanks to the ADF&G Division of Wildlife Conservation.

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