What’s gooey and slippery and oozes all over? If you guessed slime, you’re right!
But what you might not realize is just how important slime is in the lives of some of the creatures God made. For example, slime may help them steer clear of danger. Let's look at the ways just a few of these animals depend on slime.
What Is Slime?
Another word for the slime some animals produce is mucus. This slippery, gooey stuff helps protect them from bigger critters who may want to eat them for dinner.
Here are some of the ways slime helps these animals stay alive.
Because slugs do not have shells, their bodies are covered with slime to keep them from drying out. The slime on their bodies tastes terrible to other animals, so most creatures leave them alone. Slime also helps slugs move around from place to place. If you look carefully at the leaves of plants that attract slugs, you may notice the slime trail slugs leave behind.
Hagfish are sometimes called “slime eels.” These interesting creatures live in the ocean and eat dead sea animals. When other critters try to bother them, hagfish shoot out a thick, sticky slime that chokes the bigger animals.
Parrotfish make a kind of “sleeping slime” that covers their bodies while they rest in the ocean at night. This handy slime coat protects them from getting sick. Rainbow parrotfish make an even thicker mucus. Scientists believe this slime protects them from other fish who are looking for a midnight snack!
Did You Know?
Humans make slime too. Our bodies make mucus to help us fight sickness. That’s why when you have a cold, you sometimes have a runny nose!
It’s Slime Time!
Homemade slime is fun to play with. Try this recipe at home and enjoy your own slime time.
What you will need:
- 1/2 tablespoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon contact lens solution
- 4-ounce bottle of white school glue
- Food coloring
What to do: 1. Find a bowl or cup to mix your slime in. 2. Pour the glue into the bowl. 3. Add baking soda and mix. Add a few drops of food coloring. 4. Mix and add more food coloring until you get the color you want. 5. Add contact lens solution. 6. Mix until slime forms and it begins to get harder to mix. 7. Take the slime out and begin kneading with both of your hands. 8. If needed, add a few more drops of contact lens solution to make the slime less sticky.
Have fun playing with your slime!