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Animal Helpers: Aquariums

Animal Helpers: Aquariums

By: Jennifer Keats Curtis
Publisher: Arbordale Publishing
Publication Date: February 2014
ISBN: 978-1628552126
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: March 2014

The bottom of the ocean is alive with activity as small, colorful fish swim around the coral while schools of fish swim above. Wait, this isn’t an ocean, it’s an aquarium. “In an aquarium, you can trek through millions of gallons of fresh and salt water, but you won’t get wet.” Everyone gazes in awe at the schools of fish, especially large creatures like an ocean sunfish. Just what do people do who work in aquariums? In this book you’ll be able to see many of them and learn about what they do. You’ll also get a glimpse at many of the strange and exotic creatures who call an aquarium their home.

Many of the animals who live in aquariums come from not only the oceans, but also our lakes. Some of the people who work in aquariums are “aquarists, biologists, curators, and volunteers.” Perhaps you’ve seen some of their charges such as a pumpkinseed sunfish, but have you ever seen a weedy sea dragon? If you’ve ever been to an aquarium and are wowed by what you see, you may want to eventually work in one. In this book you’ll learn about some things they do such as transport animals, work in labs, “feed sea otters,” train them, or you might even “treat a sick electric eel, or listen to a penguin’s heartbeat.” You’ll even get a few ideas about how you can get ready to work in that aquarium!

This is a fun, interesting book about people who work in aquariums that young people will love. The layout is very vibrant with full-color, full-page photographs that often span two pages. There are numerous framed photographs that accent particular aquarium species that are quite stunning. For example we see a Mandarinfish, a Garibaldi, scalloped hammerhead, and a walleye. Newly independent readers can tackle this beginning nonfiction book with a bit of assistance with unusual words such as “Indonesian” (jellyfish). In the back of the book are animal fun facts and several activities, including some that can be downloaded and printed from the publisher’s website. This would be an excellent book to read and discuss in the homeschool or classroom setting.

Quill says: If you have a young animal lover, who just might want to work in an aquarium, they'll most certainly love this book!

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