The Call of the Osprey
The Call of the Osprey

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Annotation: Explores mercury pollution found in the rivers and streams of Western Montana that might cause harm to humans, and the extinction of the entire osprey species.
Genre: Biology
Catalog Number: #97480
Format: Perma-Bound Edition from Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Common Core/STEAM: STEAM STEAM Common Core Common Core
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Copyright Date: 2015
Edition Date: 2015
Illustrator: Munoz, William,
Pages: 80 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-544-23268-2 Perma-Bound: 0-605-85947-7
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-544-23268-6 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-85947-0
Dewey: 598.9
LCCN: 2014016090
Dimensions: 23 x 28 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
From the Scientists in the Field series, this handsome volume introduces the Montana Osprey Project, beginning with an empty nest. Awaiting the annual return of the ospreys, it sits on a platform atop a tall pole. Nearby, Patent and Muñoz watch as a roofing truck lifts two scientists up to adjust a webcam aimed at the nest. Well researched and clearly written, the text offers plenty of information about ospreys in the area and the work of the scientists who study them. They band the chicks, take blood and feather samples, and track pollutants in the local environment, where heavy metals can sometimes be traced to runoff from old mines. Sidebars tackle topics such as Superfund sites, DDT, and the hazards of plastic baling twine in osprey nests. One engaging, diarylike feature pairs written observations with photos of the adult birds, their eggs, and the chicks as they grow and prepare to fly. Illustrated with many fine color photos, this is a solid addition to science collections.
School Library Journal
Gr 5&11;8&12; Patent's lucid prose and Mu&1;oz's clear color photos work together to document the efforts of the Montana Osprey Project, which studies the negative effects of toxic metals released into the environment during mining operations on these raptors. The book follows three scientists&12;Erick Greene, Heiko Langner, and Rob Domenech&12;as they study established pairs during the nesting season. They band osprey chicks, take blood samples and feather clippings for chemical analysis, fit birds with electronic transmitters to follow their wanderings, scoop silt from riverbeds to check for pollutants, and focus two webcams on osprey nests to check on parenting skills and chick development. The trio also talk with wildlife biology students and cooperate with locals who are fascinated by ospreys. Sidebars abound on a wide variety of topics, many pertaining to the ospreys: their biology, food, nesting behaviors, and migration patterns. Others include biographical background on the three scientists, an article on a young student and her experiments on fish in metal-contaminated waters, and information about the use of mercury in mining operations and the dangers that baling twine poses to nest building ospreys. An extensive author's note describes Patent's experience with some very far-flung pollution. VERDICT An exciting addition to a stellar series.&12; Patricia Manning, formerly at Eastchester Public Library, NY
Word Count: 15,884
Reading Level: 7.6
Interest Level: 4-7
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 7.6 / points: 3.0 / quiz: 174118 / grade: Middle Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:11.5 / points:5.0 / quiz:Q66133
Lexile: NC1210L

This meticulously researched and photographed account follows three University of Montana scientists and their interdisciplinary work with osprey: fish-catching birds with gigantic nests and a family that functions with teamwork and cooperation. Today the osprey is studied to monitor the effects of mercury on living things. The osprey hunts in a very small area around its large nest and so scientists can pinpoint where mercury is coming from. In Missoula, Montana, the scientists have been following ospreys for six years, collecting data on the amount of contaminants found on their feathers and in their blood. The rivers and streams in Western Montana are still suffering effects from inappropriate mining activities performed more than a hundred years ago. This man-made pollution is still dangerous to people and to wildlife.

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