Description for Good Reads:
Little brown bats do us a big favor. They eat huge numbers of insects! That helps limit the spread of diseases and the damage that insects do to farm crops. But in recent years, large populations of little brown bats have been dying off each winter. Is a virus killing them? Could climate change or pesticides be the cause? Or is it something else? Follow a team of dedicated scientists working to save the little brown bats in this real-life science mystery.
My thoughts on this book:
When I lived in New England, I tended to spot little brown bats not only outdoors but in some awkward indoor locations such as fireplace chimneys, and even hiding in a shoe in my closet. Each time, I encountered one of these ugly but cute creatures I managed to find a way to return them to their outdoor freedom with only a raised heartbeat for both of us.
In The Case of the Vanishing Little Brown Bats, Markle provides readers with a mystery to solve (What is causing so many brown bats to die?) and takes them step by step through the discovery process on the way to finding what was truly dangerous to these small bats (pseudogymnoascus destructans). It was fascinating to see what scientists had to do to uncover this troubling fungus and how to also study the effect of this disease of bats and then to finally find a way to possibly combat it.
In addition to very engaging and read aloud friendly text, there are a number of resources at the end of the book. I have included, below, one of the videos that Markle mentions in her book.
Video: Countdown to Extinction for Little Brown Bats (referenced in book):
If you are looking for additional resources to pair with The Case of the Vanishing Little Brown Bats, here are several that I have read and enjoyed...The Bat Scientist by Mary Kay Carson (also looks at White-nose Syndrome), A Place for Bats by Melissa Stewart, and Sandra Markle's Little Lost Bat. The latter required several tissues. Look for a copy of The Case of the Vanishing Little Brown Bats at your local public library or independent bookstore.
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