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Full Text Review(s)
Each animal’s entry runs two to three pages in length and each is color-coded according to which type of animal it is (i.e., blue for mammals, pink for birds, green for reptiles, yellow for amphibians, dark blue for fish, and purple for invertebrates). The color-coded section provides a fact sheet with information on the animal’s class, order, family, and genus; alternative name; general weight and length; distinctive features; diet; breeding; life span; habitat; where they can be found; and a note on their threat of extinction. Colorful pictures accompany the text and a map indicates where the animal can be found. Throughout the volumes are what the publisher calls ‘Guidepost Articles’ (indicated by yellow paper), which provide information on general groups of animals, such as bears, dolphins, and apes. These articles are generally longer in length and give information on the group’s physical appearance, diet, habitat, and lifestyle. It also provides a ‘family tree’ diagram linking the different species together. At the end there are see also references that direct the reader to specific species located in the volume. For example, after referencing the entry on apes the reader is directed to chimpanzees, gibbons, gorillas, and orangutans. The final volume provides a glossary of terms, a bibliography, Internet resources, resources for younger readers, and names and Web addresses to wildlife refugees and conservation agencies. Five indexes facilitate ease of use: an index of common names, an index of scientific names, an index of places, an index of animal behaviors (e.g., nocturnal, parasite), and a comprehensive index.
This is a beautiful and worthwhile set. The volumes are slim so they will appeal to young adults and can be used by many researchers at once. There are many resources on this topic, however, so librarians will need to establish their need for this title. It may be too expensive for school libraries, but public libraries with budgets that permit may want to consider this set."
AMERICAN REFERENCE BOOKS ANNUAL
*"Gr 6 Up-This vibrant revision treats readers to an informative, exhaustive, and intimate examination of the habits, behaviors, and lifestyle of "species from every branch of the animal world, every region of earth’s landmasses and all oceans." Approximately 1200 accessible and well-researched single to multipage entries, arranged in alphabetical order by creatures’ common name, lucidly and accurately discuss the anatomy, size, diet, habitat, breeding habits, and distinctive features of a diversity of animals. Each updated article also includes useful data boxes that offer information about each animal-scientific classification, length, weight, status, etc. Fifteen new articles on the world’s major biomes and habitats describe their climate, outstanding physical characteristics, native plant and animal life, conservation issues, and worldwide distribution. Thirty-plus "guidepost entries" offer supplementary material about selected groups of related animals-apes, deer, whales, to name a few. The wealth of new illustrative matter, consisting of beautifully composed color photographs, is instructive and relevant. Color maps, another addition to the edition, depict the population and range of the species. The index volume lists species by common name, scientific name, and geographic region. An "Index of Animal Behaviors" is user-friendly. A visual and verbal feast."
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