Batty About Texas

Overview

An energetic Mexican free-tailed bat named Bo takes children on an adventure across Texas and deep into the nocturnal world of bats. He educates readers about the importance of these mammals and the history of the great Lone Star State with fun-to-know trivia. From San Antonio to Austin and across the Mexican border, Bo flies high above and fascinates readers with his "bat facts."
More than 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats live beneath the Congress Avenue Bridge in downtown ...
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Overview

An energetic Mexican free-tailed bat named Bo takes children on an adventure across Texas and deep into the nocturnal world of bats. He educates readers about the importance of these mammals and the history of the great Lone Star State with fun-to-know trivia. From San Antonio to Austin and across the Mexican border, Bo flies high above and fascinates readers with his "bat facts."
More than 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats live beneath the Congress Avenue Bridge in downtown Austin, making the city the largest urban bat colony in North America. Baby bats are called pups, and adults fly and hunt using echolocation. Bats are important to the environment, as Bo tells young readers. They help control insect populations, especially mosquitoes. In a single night, one bat may eat close to its own body weight in bugs. Across Texas, there are more than thirty-two different kinds of bats, but by far, Bo is the most interesting of all.

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J. Jaye Smith was born in Oklahoma, but she was raised in Slidell, Louisiana. It was during high school that she discovered her passion for music and the creative arts. During her late teen years, Smith began working as a professional vocalist and soon enrolled at Belmont University. In 1993, she graduated cum laude with a bachelor of science degree in elementary education and worked as a music teacher. Smith has written songs and studied writing at Harvard University. She lives in Austin, Texas, with her family where she sings and writes.
Kathy Coates is an accomplished artist, specializing in still life and plein-air landscape paintings. She has painted commission portraits since the early 1990s and is a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 1-2

This book is a little bit batty, a little bit Texas, and a little bit about how beneficial bats are to Texas agriculture, all told in the voice of "Bo," a Mexican free-tailed bat. This fictionalized narrator partially describes his life cycle in the "great state of Texas," the other bat species in his state, and how they help the farmers. This voice is stilted, and the text is sprinkled with exclamation points in an attempt to generate the excitement that is not present in the information. Small fact boxes appear occasionally. Garish colors are the salient feature of the careless, slapdash-looking illustrations. Accuracy is often sacrificed; e.g., one adult is drawn with four baby bats, but Mexican free-tailed bats bear only one offspring each summer. Some of the most interesting facts about these creatures are omitted (the colonies are made up of the pregnant mothers; the babies roost apart from the mothers, and each mother must identify her offspring by its call in order to feed it). By having more than one focus, the book shortchanges readers on all counts.-Frances E. Millhouser, formerly at Chantilly Regional Library, Fairfax County, VA

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781589805828
  • Publisher: Pelican Publishing Company, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 1/1/2009
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 988,044
  • Age range: 5 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.70 (w) x 11.20 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

J. Jaye Smith spent her childhood in Slidell, Louisiana, and found her passion in the creative arts while still in high school. She attended Belmont University and graduated cum laude with a bachelor of science degree in elementary education in 1993. Smith has worked as a vocalist and a music teacher for most of her life and is also an accomplished songwriter. She lives in Austin, Texas, with her family and spends her free time reading, dancing, and gardening.

Kathy Coates' work is on permanent display in gallery collections throughout the Southeast. Coates uses illustrating to combine her love of art, the South, and the natural world. She is a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators and her illustrations appear in Batty About Texas, and Cowgirl Alphabet, both available from Pelican. She lives and works in her hometown of Charlotte, North Carolina.

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