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In a show that has Talking Animals or Funny Animals, with the animal characters mainly being mice, birds, lizards, moles, etc., sometimes you can expect there to be a body of water like rivers, lakes or ponds as the setting. The best way for these animals to have transportation is to use a leaf as a boat in order to travel from place to place.
Put bluntly, this is a trope in which an animal character will use a leaf which acts like a boat. It can also be used in fairy tales as well as being a common motif in any tale or art to do with little people like the fey/fairies.
- The Rescuers: Bernard and Bianca use a large leaf propelled by Evinrude the dragonfly in order to find and rescue Penny.
- This was used once in Antz.
- In Fun and Fancy Free, Mickey, Donald and Goofy cross the giant's moat on a giant leaf.
- Woodstock had one in Race for Your Life Charlie Brown.
- In The Princess and the Frog, Ray goes out on the bayou in one of these during his funeral.
- In Mouse Guard, Sadie uses one to travel to Calogero.
- The elven boats in The Lord of the Rings, while not literally made of leaves, use this as a visual motif.
- In Tad Williams' Otherland series, the heroes' boat turns into a leaf when they travel into a simulation in which they're smaller than the local insects.
- In The Legend of Zelda the Minish Cap, while Link is tiny, he can go on top of a leaf and use his Gust Jar to propel himself across the body of water.
- Used in the Lost Woods dungeon of Dark Cloud to go to a hidden bonus dungeon.
- Some types of Ants use leaves to cross streams.