Jacanas are colorful birds that live in tropical areas all over the world. Their bodies are usually a cinnamon or chestnut color. They also have black, white, and yellow colors on their heads, necks, and chests. Most jacanas also have a frontal shield. This shield covers the jacana's forehead. The shield is usually red or bright blue. Male and female jacanas are the same colors. Female jacanas are bigger than male jacanas.

Jacanas are water birds. They spend much of their time in the water. They are very good swimmers and divers. They can swim underwater. If predators are in the area, jacanas might even hide underwater. Jacanas can stay underwater for a long time with only the tips of their bills sticking out of the water.

Jacanas lay colorful eggs. The eggs are deep tan in color with dark lines. The lines look like paint has been dribbled on the eggs. Each egg has a different pattern. The eggs are very shiny. They look like they have been polished. The glossy eggs are difficult to see among the plants in the water.

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