Migration Nation: Animals on the Go from Coast to Coast
Joanne O'Sullivan, author
Joanne O'Sullivan is the author of 101 Places You Gotta See Before You're 12!, 101 Things You Gotta Do Before You're 12 and 101 Ways You Can Help Save the Planet Before You're 12, as well as many titles for adults including, Book of Wacky Law Stuff and Book of Superstitious Stuff for the Imagine imprint. She and her children spend many happy hours exploring the wonders of the natural world. Joanne lives in Asheville, North Carolina.
Read more about Joanne O'Sullivan.
National Wildlife Federation, illustrator
The National Wildlife Federation, America's largest wildlife conservation and education organization, is dedicated to "inspiring Americans to protect wildlife for our children's future." It is also home to the award-winning Ranger Rick and Ranger Rick, Jr. magazines and apps.
Read more about the National Wildlife Federation.
O'Sullivan invites readers to join North American animals who regularly take to the "Herptile Highway," the "Polar Bear Parkway," "Bison Boulevard," or "Salmon Street."
Whether driven by seasonal changes in food sources, the "need to breed," or, like monarch butterflies, more mysterious urges, some animals travel hundreds or even thousands of miles over cyclical routes. The author highlights a dozen creatures and mentions others. She marvels at the seemingly miraculous navigation skills of salmon and gray whales and sounds ominous notes about rapidly declining populations of monarchs and polar bears; she describes efforts to create safer crossings over paved roads for migratory snakes and amphibians ("herptiles") in Illinois' Shawnee National Forest and migration corridors through fenced-in land for pronghorn antelopes in Wyoming and elsewhere. Along with maps and photos aplenty, she tucks in kid-friendly factual snippets about each creature, as well as specific locations where each can be observed on its habitual round. Though many of the photographs go uncaptioned and so add little beyond eye candy, this broad and breezy overview will stimulate young animal lovers' "need to read" about one of the natural world's behavioral wonders.
Budding biologists who have taken first steps with the likes of Marianne Bertes' Going Home: The Mysteries of Animal Migration, illustrated by Jennifer DiRubbio (2010), will find themselves drawn further down that road.
Ranger Rick, the National Wildlife Federation's nature-loving raccoon and magazine star, helps children follow the migratory paths of nine animals across land, sea, and sky. A section on "herptiles" (reptiles and amphibians) takes readers to southern Illinois where some 50 species of snakes and amphibians migrate across "Snake Road" each spring and autumn; a segment about grey whales traces their 10,000-mile journey from Alaska to Mexico, "one of the world's longest animal migrations." Photographs, migration maps, and resources for readers who hope to witness firsthand some of these migrations round out a solid introduction to some impressive feats of animal ambulation.
It's hard to remember when we were first taught that birds fly south for the winter and head back north for the summer, but the larger scope of animal migrations is one that is likely to capture the imagination of most children. From the National Wildlife Foundation, the organization behind the children's nature magazine Ranger Rick, this book examines the mostly seasonal movements of animals in North America. The animals profiled fly, swim, roam, and slither across their habitats for ranges that span the relatively short 1/4-to 5-mile movements of 35 species of snakes and amphibians on the "Snake Road" in Illinois to the up to 10,000-mile coastal journey of gray whales from Mexico to Alaska. The book is broken into three parts-land, sea, and sky—and profiles a range of animals, examining their travels over the year. Highlighting diverse animals—including insects, fish, herptiles, mammals, and birds—maps and pictures are put to good use as the text discusses why animals are driven to move and how their journeys are being affected by humans and human-related changes in the environment. Parents will especially like the introduction and definition of new vocabulary words and concepts as applied to animal movements, as well as the glossary at the end of the book. In addition, each section ends with a list of websites parents can explore with their children to learn more about the species profiled.
ISBN: 978-1-60734-790-3 EPUB
ISBN: 978-1-60734-789-7 PDF
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Page count: 96