BACK TO BASICS: WINTER EXPLAINED TO KIDS 4

Children ask questions – and we have the answers. This time: what do fish do in winter?

What do fish do in winter?

The fact that fish can survive the winter has to do with physics. When water becomes cold, it stretches and becomes lighter. So ice, which is frozen water, floats on the surface. This is good for living creatures in winter, because the layer of ice on a lake or pond provides protection from the cold. And the further below the ice you are, the warmer the water is. Water is heaviest at 4 degrees. Which is why down at the bottom there is always a layer of water at 4 degrees, even in winter – and this is warm enough for the fish. So until it gets warmer again, the fish stay as far down in the water as possible, limit their bodily functions and barely move in order to save energy. Some fish even bury themselves in the mud on the bottom.