The Tarantula Scientist
Publication Date: March 2004
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Yellow blood, silk of steel, skeletons on the outside! These amazing attributes don’t belong to comic book characters or alien life forms, but to Earth’s biggest and hairiest spiders: tarantulas. Here you are invited to follow Sam Marshall, spider scientist extraordinaire (he’s never been bitten), as he explores the dense rainforest of French Guiana, knocking on the doors of tarantula burrows, trying to get a closer look at these incredible creatures. You’ll also visit the largest comparative spider laboratory in Americawhere close to five hundred live tarantulas sit in towers of stacked shoeboxes and plastic containers, waiting for their turn to dazzle and astound the scientists who study them.
Sy Montgomery is an author, naturalist, newspaper columnist, scriptwriter, and radio commentator who writes award-winning books for children as well as adults. She lives in Hancock, New Hampshire. Visit her website at www.authorwire.com Sy Montgomery and photographer Nic Bishop won the Sibert Medal in 2011 for their collaborative work on Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World's Strangest Parrot, another Scientist in the Field title.
"Montgomery has a gift for scene-setting... She deftly weaves clear explanations and comparisons into the main text... Bishop's phenomenal photos show spiders mating, shedding their skin, even leaping through the air. It's enough to make Miss Muffet fall in love." Kirkus Reviews, Starred
"...this is a vivid look at an enthusiastic scientist energetically and happily at work, both in the field and in the lab, questioning, examining, testing, and making connections. A treat, even for arachnophobes." School Library Journal, Starred
"Bishop's photographs rise magnificently to the challenge of capturing earth-toned spiders amid earth-toned jungle surroundings, bringing the critters up-close and personal and offering a few of his trademark astonishing stop-action shots... This would liven up a science curriculum no end, and it might also convince young readers to go beyond the elemental pleasures of 'Ew, gross' to the more sophisticated appreciation of 'Wow, cool.'" The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, Starred
This beautifully photographed book explains just about everything an elementary school student might want to know about this often misunderstood and maligned creature.
The Five Owls, Starred