With tongues firmly in cheeks, a pair of animal admirers offers step-by-step instructions for engaging in some surprising animal behaviors.
Tailorbirds, bowerbirds, and egrets, beavers, armadillos and crocodiles, octopuses, barn spiders, and ant lions—skillful animals from around the world are the subjects of Jenkins and Page’s latest collaboration. With his customary cut-and–torn-paper images set on a plain white background, Jenkins illustrates the proper procedures for trapping fish as humpback whales do (with a bubble net), for warning other vervet monkeys of danger (with special cries for eagles, leopards, or snakes), and for cracking nuts as some crows do (let a car do it—but first you should learn to fly). Other possible activities include wooing bighorn sheep ewes with head butts, building nests out of chewed-up wood like paper wasps, and dancing over the water like western grebes. Swallowing a whole wild pig (after squeezing it to death as a python does) is the culmination. In the backmatter, a paragraph about each animal includes a thumbnail image and some further information about habitat, size, and behaviors. Youngsters who glory in learning animal facts will be thrilled; for those who enjoy pretending, there are inviting opportunities for imitation.
Readers and listeners alike will eat this one up. (Informational picture book. 4-9)