Challenger: America's Favorite Eagle

Overview

Challenger, an American bald eagle, is this country's most popular winged mascot. He was blown out of his nest as an eaglet and taken in by humans. After several failed attempts to release Challenger back into the wild, he was taken to the American Eagle Foundation. It was there that trainer Al Cecere recognized the rare opportunity to work with an uninjured eagle that had imprinted on humans. He knew Challenger, as a free flying bald eagle, a sight few Americans actually witness, could become an ambassador ...
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Overview

Challenger, an American bald eagle, is this country's most popular winged mascot. He was blown out of his nest as an eaglet and taken in by humans. After several failed attempts to release Challenger back into the wild, he was taken to the American Eagle Foundation. It was there that trainer Al Cecere recognized the rare opportunity to work with an uninjured eagle that had imprinted on humans. He knew Challenger, as a free flying bald eagle, a sight few Americans actually witness, could become an ambassador bringing attention to the plight of these beautiful birds. Readers will recognize Challenger from the appearances he has made -- ranging from such varied venues as the White House and the 100th Anniversary of National Wildlife Refuge System, the Pentagon and the Olympic Torch Ceremony. In addition Challenger has flown at the World Series and the 100th Anniversary of Flight at Kitty Hawk. Challenger has also appeared on Late Night with David Letterman, Good Morning America, Larry King Live, the Disney Channel, and Animal Planet. Margot Raven's first children's book, Angels in the Dust, won five national awards, including an IRATeacher's Choice Award. Her first book with Sleeping Bear Press, Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot, was the runner-up for the 2004 Texas Bluebonnet Award. She lives with her family in Charleston, South Carolina. Challenger is illustrator Gijsbert van Frankenhuzen's eighteenth children's book with Sleeping Bear Press. His most recent title The Legend of the Petoskey Stone was a number one Midwest bestselling children's picture book. Gijsbert and his family live in Bath, Michigan, outside of Lansing, on a 40-acre farm where they rehabilitate injured wildlife.
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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Challenger is the true story of an American bald eaglet whose nest is blown from a tall old pine in a Louisiana woods after a great storm. As his parents watch nervously, the eaglet is scooped from the fallen nest by a fisherman. The eaglet is soon dependent on the bits of fish the fisherman and his family drop into his hungry mouth. The fisherman eventually gives the eagle to a zoo, hoping he can be returned to the wild. Twice the eagle is set free--and twice he proves that he can't find food without human help. That is when fate steps in, transforming the displaced eagle into a majestic ambassador who helps to halt the extinction of America's bald eagles. Challenger reminds young readers how closely nature is tied to the actions of humans. And the author shares the message that a single person--and bird--can accomplish great things if they passionately strum the heartstrings of people who love beauty and nature. Wrapped in the arms of love, hope, and generosity, this tale soars, as do the illustrations. 2005, Sleeping Bear Press, Ages 4 to 8.
—Sheri Bell-Rehwoldt
School Library Journal
Gr 1-4-A fallen nest puts an eaglet into human hands, leaving him permanently imprinted and unable to fend for himself in the wild. A home at the American Eagle Foundation and instruction in falconry skills by its staff result in Challenger becoming a trained, free-flying eagle. Raven's somewhat stilted text and van Frankenhuyzen's often dramatic paintings follow the bird and his champion, Al Cecere, to a culminating free-flight before 80,000 people at the opening ceremonies of the 1996 Para-Olympics in Atlanta. More than a simple story, this is a fervent plea for the continued protection of the American bald eagle. For further eagle lore, Helen R. Sattler's eye-catching The Book of Eagles (HarperCollins, 1989; o.p.) is a great choice.-Patricia Manning, formerly at Eastchester Public Library, NY Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781585362615
  • Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press
  • Publication date: 11/30/2005
  • Series: Sleeping Bear -- True Stories
  • Pages: 48
  • Sales rank: 299,386
  • Age range: 6 - 10 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.20 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

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