November 11, 2013

The Dolphins of Shark Bay by Pamela S. Turner, photos by Scott Tuason

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , , at 1:41 am by suebe2

The Dolphins of Shark Bay
by Pamela S. Turner,
photos by Scott Tuason
Houghton Mifflin Books for Children
Scientists in the Field Series

We’ve heard it before — dolphins are smart, but how smart becomes obvious when you read this book and learn about dolphins using tools and various mothers teaching specialized hunting techniques to their daughters.

For over 25 years, scientist Janet Mann and her colleagues have studied the wild dolphins of Shark Bay, Australia.  Shark Bay is a unique ecosystem and attracts a larger number of dolphins than anywhere else.  Because of this, there are often numerous scientists there as well as fishermen and tourists.  It is thus essential to learn how human interaction effects dolphins.

Mann and her colleagues have seen how interactions with humans can alter dolphin behavior, often for the worse.  They have also seen how interactions with other dolphins alter dolphin behavior.  It all depends on whether or not the dolphin is the same gender, a relative or a higher ranking animal.

With chapters on dolphin families, dolphin communication, dolphin feeding techniques and more, readers will definitely learn about dolphins.  They will also learn about how scientists, especially scientists in the field, work.  

I can sit and watch dolphins swim for hours, but I was still surprised by how completely this book enthralled me.  The reality is that I’m just not nuts about water and dolphins are pretty deeply involved in this particular element.  That said, animals and animal behavior interests me, especially as it relates to learning and passing this knowledge from one animal to another.

Whether the reader in your life loves dolphins in particular or simply science or the ocean, consider this book with the wealth of information and inspiration that it brings.

–SueBE

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