Tending a garden and its plants - fruits and vegetables - means watering, turning the soil, seeding, adding fertilizer, waiting, watering, using the right tools, weeding, getting rid of slugs... and when the fruit and veg are fully ripe, picking them and feasting on them! The keys aspects of gardening that little ones can get their hands into.
Walking, observing, collecting, listening, sensing, discovering an ecosystem, a landscape and its components. Learning the names of trees, flowers, birds, insects, mushrooms, little mammals... Adventuring and leaving your fears behind, letting your imagination wander. "Thank you forest for offering us So many surprises and pleasures! Two eyes, that may just be enough To take it all in? ..."
All around the rivers, animals come to drink, birds come to reproduce… In rivers, the fishes swim calmly, going with the flow. The river is also a place of living for many insects, a well furnished food saver and the favourite habitat for many aquatic plants.
Whales, Sperm whales and Dolphins nurse their young, they are warm-blooded and breathe through their lungs. They are mammals just like us!
Whales sing, dolphins chatter to locate each other and also to communicate. They have beaten many records.
North Pole or South Pole? We often tend to confuse them. They are both at the ends of the Earth, they are often covered with ice and their names are quite similar: Arctic and Antarctic! But the similarities stop there! Indeed, if the North Pole (the Arctic) is an ocean surrounded by islands and pieces of continents, the South Pole (Antarctica) is a land covered with ice! And that changes everything ...
Viviparous, oviparous, ovoviviparous... Technical terms to describe the same phenomenon: reproduction! For viviparous mammals it all happens inside the female: fertilisation and gestation. Birds are oviparous, they lay eggs and then sit on them... And what about fish...? Each species has the same desire, to safely pass on the gift of life!
A region to nest, a region to live… So is the life of migratory birds. In one year, Arctic Tern travels 35,000 km. Minute sandpipers, no bigger than robins, direct their flight to South Africa from the icy depths of the tundra! How do birds orient themselves during their trip? How can they find a territory where they go, often, for the first time? When do they have to leave?
Underground, in a pile of earth, between tree roots, from tree trunks to tree tops, and from ocean depths to mountain summits... At every level of nature, animals eat, sleep, reproduce and care for their young. But predators are always at the door! So where do animals hide? Every animal has its refuge and method! Guided by inherited instinct, they have the body shape to do it. Every one of them knows exactly where, when and how to build its shelter.
Carnivores, herbivores, insectivores, omnivores... Each have their own favourite food! Carnivores are equipped to kill. Herbivores each graze in their own way. Seed-eating birds peck at pine cones. As for pandas, they're crazy about a unique dish - bamboo shoots!
Cowboys' spirited companions, solid fieldworkers, the elegant mounts of riding clubs... all horses have a common ancestor: the Hippopotamus Horses are gregarious animals. They need their own ilk to feel safe and play. They don't have "paws" or "maws" or "snouts", but "mouths" and "noses" and "feet". They whinny, and speak, a lot with their ears as it happens: pointed front they're concentrating; folded back watch out they're mad...
In hibernation marmots have a very particular type of sleep. Their heart beats slowly and their body temperature drops to 8 degrees. The hedgehog can survive more than an hour without breathing ... During summer, animals prepare by eating a lot to make their reserves and in building their refuge. Do bears hibernate as well? Not at all! They often wake up, go out from time to time and give birth to her cubs. They are winter animals.
Droppings come in all shapes and sizes and tell us a lot about how animals live. Only through observing a cowpat we know what it has eaten, whether it is in good health, etc. This excellent science book shows us that there is nothing disgusting about droppings!
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