The science and scientists don’t stop after a book is published!

In 2018, The Lizard Lady launched.

The beautifully illustrated nonfiction follows the real Lizard Lady, herpetologist Nicole Angeli, as she chops through rough Caribbean terrain to find and save a critically endangered ground lizard on the U.S. Virgin Island of St. Croix. The slithery little St. Croix ground lizards nearly became extinct after a cute but invasive mammal was brought in to eat the rats that were eating farmers’ crops. (Spoiler alert: The Lizard Lady and her team find a way to save these reptiles from extinction!)

The Lizard Lady, now officially Dr. Angeli, was finishing her doctorate (Ph.D.) as she and author Jennifer Keats Curtis (JKC) worked on the book. Today, Dr. Angeli is the Director of Virgin Islands Department of Planning and Natural Resources. And (drumroll please), she has BIG news to share about the St. Croix ground lizards. Hear more about it as Dr. Angeli and JKC (who clearly have become fast friends) discuss the Lizard Lady’s latest on their last Zoom call video.

To learn more about The Lizard Lady, click here. The book is available in English and Spanish (La Dama de las Siguanas) wherever you normally buy your books or through Arbordale, Amazon, or an independent bookstore near you.

Where’s the Pooper Snooper this summer?

by Jennifer Keats Curtis

School may be out for the summer but working dogs are still, well working. This week, I had a chance to learn what was occupying the time of one of my favorite human-dog duos, Julianne Ubigau and her dog Jasper. Julianne, the education and outreach coordinator of Conservation Canines, University of Washington Center for Environmental and Forensic Science, and I are the authors of Pooper Snooper. This gloriously illustrated (by Phyllis Saroff) nonfiction details how Julianne and her dog detective work together to help scientists investigate and track endangered animals. (Yes, the title gives it away: The snoopers’ clue? Poop.)

 In addition to teaching her dogs to sniff for the scat of endangered animals, Julianne and her canine helpers are also working with scientists and environmentalists to seek out invasive plants and animals, such as garlic mustard plants and bullfrogs. In her spare time (which she could not possibly have), Julianne is talking with students, interested groups and podcasters to explain how the incredibly useful snufflers of rescued dogs can be. This month, Phil Hatterman, host and producer of Dog Words Presented by Rosie Fund, interviewed Julie to get at the heart (or at least the nose) of the matter. We hope you’ll take a few minutes to listen, https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/dog-words/id1496693461?i=1000568974499.

Photos courtesy of Julianne Ubigau: Sampson, Julianne’s current pooper snooper, readies himself to sniff out bullfrogs.

Shark Awareness Day July 14

Sharks… just the word may evoke fear in some. The reality is that one is more likely to be hit by lightning than be attacked by a shark.  

There are over 500 species of sharks that play important roles in the balance needed for healthy oceans. Some sharks are at the top of the ocean food web keeping marine populations healthy. Other sharks keep the ocean clean by eating animal remains (detritus).

You may find shark teeth at the beach. Sharks loose up to 30,000 teeth over their lifetime and replace them very quickly.

You’ll never find shark bones. Shark and ray skeletons are not made of bones like we have. Their skeletons are made with cartilage, like we have in our ears and noses!

Learn more about sharks and rays by reading some great books today. Look for these and other shark books at your library or online at www.arbordalepublishing.com.

And when you are finished reading, here are some great activities from members of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums to help young children learn more.

It’s National Zoo and Aquarium Month!

Children love going to zoos and aquariums (Z/As) as great places to see animals they would not see in their daily lives. As children (and their parents/caregivers) explore, they are learning about the animals and their habitats, especially when they read the signage and listen to educator talks.

Learning about animals, their habitats and conservation issues is a first step in caring about the environment. Z/As donate millions of dollars a year to support conservation issues around the world. When you purchase a ticket and buy products in their gift shops, you are contributing to those causes too.

Many Z/As even participate in breeding programs. The American Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) even has programs (Species Survival Plans) to help zoos find endangered-animal breeding partners and locations for the resulting babies. In some cases, these babies may even be released back into the wild! The National and Phoenix Zoos raised and released black-footed ferrets. San Diego and Oregon Zoos participate in raising and releasing California Condors. Hogle Zoo breads and releases Boreal Toads. Potter Park Zoo releases Puerto Rican Crested Toads back into the wild. The Phoenix Zoo participated in “Operation Oryx” to release Arabian Oryx into the wild. The North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores is one of several zoos and aquariums participating in raising Orinoco crocodile hatchings to be released into the wilds. Other animals that have been successfully raised and introduced into the wild include red wolves, pygmy rabbits, butterflies, Western pond turtles, fishers, and wolverines.

Support your local zoo and aquarium this month! And, make sure to read lots of books featuring animals you might find there.

#zoo #aquarium #helpinganimals

Celebrating Hawaiian Monk Seals

The Marine Mammal Center (TMMC) just announced that the Hawaiian monk seal population has exceeded 1500 seals for the first time in 20 years! TMMC is the only partner authorized by NOAA to rehabilitate these endangered animals. Researchers estimate that 30% of these seals are alive today directly due to conservation efforts by TMMC!

Read about one of the seals they helped: Honey Girl: The Hawaiian Monk Seal (https://tinyurl.com/5yn37k8c) by Jeanne Walker Harvey, illustrated by Shennen Bersani. And learn about more of the Hawaiian monk seals TMMC is helping. https://tinyurl.com/66zfmd5c

#endangeredanimals #Hawaiianmonkseals #helpinganimals

Mount St. Helen’s Volcano

At 8:32 (Pacific) on May 18, 1980, Mount St. Helens volcano erupted killing 57 people and destroying the area around it. The entire northside of the mountain slid down the mountain. After the eruption, scientist spent years studying how life returned to the area and, interestingly, they give the lowly gopher much of the credit. Read Gopher to the Rescue to your children to learn how Mother Earth in all her wisdom replenishes herself following this kind of natural disaster. https://www.arbordalepublishing.com/bookpage.php?id=GopherRescue

How to Train a Pooper Snooper

Finding it

Do you love training your dog new tricks? Co-author Julianne Ubigau has trained her shelter dogs amazing tricks that help scientists save important animals.

Pooper Snooper is the story of Julianne’s work tracking the Pacific Pocket Mouse with Sampson. The story details training, and tracking, and a little time for playing ball. As part of the wildlife detective team, the duo searches the terrain, and Sampson uses his powerful nose to pick up on the scent of tiny mouse poop. The scientists learn so much about the population of mice that would take much more effort with only humans searching for them.

Although the story centers around Julianne’s work, author Jennifer Keats Curtis and illustrator Phyllis Saroff also bring the story to life. Jennifer has told the story of many scientists working in various fields. She can take complicated jobs or subjects and use language that young readers relate to and understand. Phyllis is a certified dog trainer, and she drew inspiration from some of her favorite pups for Pooper Snooper. The digital illustrations are realistic and fun!

We had an amazing time chatting about creating Pooper Snooper with Jennifer, Julianne, and Phyllis. Watch it here!

Get your copy of Pooper Snooper or download the “For Creative Minds” section and other educational activities at arbordalepublishing.com.

Meet the Hatzegopteryx!

Swooping - I am Hatzegopteryx by Timothy J. Bradley

If you liked Timothy Bradley’s I am Allosaurus, you are sure to love I am Hatzegopteryx!

Can you imagine a leaping, swooping carnivore the size of an airplane? Sixty-six million years ago, Hatzegopteryx flew through the skies of what is now known as Romania. He could gulp down a small dinosaur with just one swallow!

Like, I am Allosaurus, I am Hatzegopteryx uses repetitive three-word sentences to show readers what it was like to grow up as a giant pterosaur.

Cover - I am Hatzegopteryx

Can you imagine swooping through the air like Hatzegopteryx, a giant of the ancient skies? Hatzegopteryx (hatz-eh-GOP-ter-iks) was one of the largest pterosaurs that ever lived; about the size of a small airplane. I am Hatzegopteryx, the second book in Arbordale Publishing’s I am Prehistoric series, gives children a glimpse into the life of the awesome Hatzegopteryx, from tiny chick to majestic winged predator, and how it made its living. Unlike many pterosaurs, this one was a terrestrial carnivore, spending its time hunting prey on land. Just like today’s animals, prehistoric creatures had adaptations and behaviors that helped them survive in their habitat—a environment that was in some ways quite different from what we see around us today.

Author Timothy J. Bradley

It’s said that people know the most about dinosaurs when they are 4 years old or have a 4-year-old child—unless they get a degree in paleontology! Author and illustrator Timothy J. Bradley might be the exception to this rule with his paleontology related books and illustrations. In addition to I am Hatzegopteryx, Tim also wrote and illustrated I am Allosaurus for Arbordale. Tim’s books have earned awards and accolades from reviewers including The Horn BookSchool Library JournalKirkus Reviews, and Booklist. To learn more about Tim’s other books, visit his website at www.timjbradley.com.

Kids will love learning to read with the I am Prehistoric series. And today, get a glimpse inside Bradley’s artistic process!

Visit arbordalepublishing.com to learn more or get your copy of I am Hatzegopteryx and I am Allosaurus. You can also download the “For Creative Minds” section and take the quizzes.

Meet the Creators: Yay for Big Brothers!

Do you have a little brother or sister? Do you look up to an older sibling?

We just released a perfect read for any family awaiting a new sibling, Yay for Big Brothers! by Janet Halfmann, illustrated by Shennen Bersani.

On each page of Yay for Big Brothers! We meet a different animal family and get a glimpse of how siblings help the youngest members. Crows help to feed new babies, beavers give young siblings a ride after a tiring swim practice, and dolphins share their favorite toys during playtime. These are just a few examples of how siblings welcome little brothers and sisters. After we learn how big brothers help, the author asks us to consider the similarities to human relationships.

Janet was inspired by watching her own family as it expanded. We sat down with Janet and Shennen to learn more about their creative process. Watch to learn more!

Get Creative

Create your own animal family puppets with these templates from Shennen! Maybe you can even play with your big brother!

We’re Having a Book Launch Party

The illustrated titles!

I am Hatzegopteryx

By Timothy J. Bradley

Can you imagine swooping through the air like Hatzegopteryx, a giant of the ancient skies? Hatzegopteryx (hatz-eh-GOP-ter-iks) was one of the largest pterosaurs that ever lived; about the size of a small airplane. I am Hatzegopteryx, the second book in Arbordale Publishing’s I am Prehistoric series, gives children a glimpse into the life of the awesome Hatzegopteryx, from tiny chick to majestic, winged predator, and how it made its living. Unlike many pterosaurs, this one was a terrestrial carnivore, spending its time hunting prey on land. Just like today’s animals, prehistoric creatures had adaptations and behaviors that helped them survive in their habitat—a environment that was in some ways quite different from what we see around us today.

The Pangolin Revelation

By Lori Schildwachter, Illustrated by Laurie Allen Klein

When Loran’s homework assignment is to create an animal’s adaptations and demonstrate how the adaptations help it survive in its environment, he knows just what he wants to do. Loran creates a multipurpose, super species by using all kinds of cool, one-of-a-kind adaptations taken from a variety of some of his favorite animals—like a monkey’s prehensile tail and a sloth’s claws or even curling up like an armadillo. Once he created what he thinks is the ultimate adaptation mashup of any animal ever, he is surprised to discover that his “imaginary creature” really exists—it’s a pangolin! Yes, these charming and unique creatures really do exist, and they are the most endangered animals you’ve possibly never heard of.

Pooper Snooper

By Jennifer Keats Curtis and Julianne Ubigau, illustrated by Phyllis Saroff

Dog detectives? Thanks to superior sniffers, some pups learn to help scientists investigate and track endangered animals. The snoopers’ clue? Poop. Dogs that are part of wildlife detective teams are trained to catch the scent of wild animal poop (scat) so that scientists can learn about these animals without luring or trapping them. Like many pooper snoopers, Sampson, the dog in this book, was once a shelter dog, too hyper and ball crazy for families. That energy and ball drive is what makes him such a good dog detective. He is trained on many species, from salamanders to bears, but his goal is always the same. Find the scat and get the ball!

Yay for Big Brothers!

By Janet Halfmann, illustrated by Shennen Bersani

Big brothers are amazing! Did you know that big brothers are important in animal families, too? Animal big brothers do many of the same things as kid big brothers. They play with their younger siblings, teach them new things, and help with their care. Sometimes animal big brothers even babysit when their parents leave to hunt for food. Are you a big brother or do you have a big brother?

The Compare and Contrast Books

Otters: River or Sea?

By Cathleen McConnell

Perhaps you’ve seen an otter swimming and playing at a zoo or aquarium, but do you know how do these amazing animals live in the wild? Most are found in freshwater habitats, while others make their home in coastal kelp forests or can be found feeding along rocky shores. There are many similarities between river otters and sea otters, but there are also vast differences. Explore fascinating facts about these playful, aquatic mammals, meet the species, and awe at adorable photos in this latest installment of the Compare and Contrast Book series.

Penguins

By Cher Vataloro

Yes, some of the 18 species of penguins live in cold, polar regions, but most penguins live in warm climates. One species even lives near the equator! These birds “fly” through the water with flippers instead of the air with wings. Most are black and white, but one species is blue and white. Some have red eyes, and some have yellow eyes. Some even have colorful bursts of feathers atop their heads. What do they all have in common and how are they different? Explore and learn about these lovable birds in this latest installment of the Compare and Contrast Book series.

Natural or Man-made?

By Arbordale Publishing

Trees give us yummy apples but also help us build houses. One of these is natural, the other man-made. Can you identify the natural resource? In this edition of The Compare and Contrast Book series, we investigate common items around us and how natural materials are made into tools, toys, and even electricity. After exploring dozens of photos, readers will be a pro at identifying ways we use natural resources from plants, animals, and elements below the Earth’s surface.

Renewable or Nonrenewable Resources

By Arbordale Publishing

Everything around us is made from the Earth. Some things are easily replaced, while others are not. Think about the food you have eaten or the energy it took to zoom to school on the bus. What natural resources have you used today, and are they easy to replace? Step through the latest book in the Compare and Contrast series to learn about the world’s resources, how long they take to reproduce, and how technology and ingenuity are helping to relieve the strain on some of our most precious reserves.

Head over to arbordalepublishing.com to learn more about each title, download the educational extras, or order your copy!