Prowling the Seas: Exploring the Hidden World of Ocean Predators

Overview

From the surface of the ocean, it’s hard to see any visible signs of life below. But this remarkable ecosystem is teeming with life—life that is increasingly under environmental stress. And it is often the predators that sound the earliest warning signs. By tracking a wide variety of ocean predators, the Tagging of Pacific Predators (TOPP) project provides essential cutting-edge information about the state of the ocean’s health and the challenges facing all its inhabitants. Acclaimed science writer Pamela S. ...

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Overview

From the surface of the ocean, it’s hard to see any visible signs of life below. But this remarkable ecosystem is teeming with life—life that is increasingly under environmental stress. And it is often the predators that sound the earliest warning signs. By tracking a wide variety of ocean predators, the Tagging of Pacific Predators (TOPP) project provides essential cutting-edge information about the state of the ocean’s health and the challenges facing all its inhabitants. Acclaimed science writer Pamela S. Turner takes readers along with four predators—a leatherback sea turtle, a bluefin tuna, a great white shark, and a Sooty Shearwater—on their remarkable journeys. This full-access look will change the way readers view our blue planet.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Cherie Ilg Haas
Strikingly detailed photography and compelling stories grace each chapter of this important book. Each chapter tells of a specific sea animal or fish including the sooty shearwater bird, the leatherback sea turtle, the great white shark, and the bluefin tuna. These all have at least a couple of things in common; all are considered to be sea life, and all are part of the TOPP (Tagging of Pacific Predators) project. Written in language that speaks to young readers, this title would be an asset to any library and biology/ecology classroom. It truly expresses the interconnectedness of these aforementioned predators, as well as their roles in the sea. Easy to read maps of their travel routes (based on the TOPP research) are in each chapter as well, showing readers how far each amazing creature is known to have traveled and their curious paths across the Pacific Ocean. A list of resources is included. This title is a promising addition to any library or classroom. Reviewer: Cherie Ilg Haas
School Library Journal
Gr 4–6—In 2000, a multinational group of scientists created the Tagging of Pacific Predators project (TOPP) to study the dwindling numbers of ocean predators and find ways to save them. This book reports on the work of scientists who fitted four species with satellite tags—loggerhead turtles, great white sharks, bluefin tuna, and sooty shearwater seabirds. The succinct text describes where the animals were found, how they were tagged, and what information the scientists gleaned as they traced migration routes, located feeding and breeding grounds, recorded the distances traveled and the length of time it took, and so on. Some basic facts about the creatures are incorporated as well, such as outstanding physical and behavioral characteristics, senses, and diet. The chapter on loggerhead turtles also describes a "race" between 11 female turtles to see which one reached the Galapagos Islands first after laying eggs in Costa Rica. One or two sharp color photographs or illustrations appear on every page; they depict the animals (the underwater shots of sharks are particularly good) and some of the scientists involved in the project. A map of the Pacific, with colored silhouettes of the animals and lines indicating their travel routes, appears at the end of each chapter. An addendum cites the current estimated population figures for the predators discussed. Students of marine life and its conservation, as well as budding oceanographers, will find this title illuminating.—Karey Wehner, formerly at San Francisco Public Library
Kirkus Reviews
Scientists connected with the TOPP (Tagging of Pacific Predators) project follow 23 species of ocean animals fitted with radio transmitters or data collectors documenting their travels throughout the Pacific. This attractive science title describes their experiences with loggerhead turtles, bluefin tuna, white sharks and sooty shearwaters. The author introduces specific scientists as well as young people involved in the studies: schoolchildren following turtles in an on-line "race" and a five-year-old who found a shark tag on the beach. Clear maps show the travels of each species, and a summary map puts them all together. Extensively illustrated with color photographs and designed so readers can easily distinguish the sections, this will immediately appeal to young nature lovers, but the limited text raises too many questions. Some come from the research: Why do male and female shearwaters migrate up different sides of the Pacific? Others are more basic: Just what is a predator? A helpful list of text, Internet and DVD resources will allow curious readers to explore the project further. (Informational picture book. 8-12)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802797483
  • Publisher: Walker & Company
  • Publication date: 10/27/2009
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 1,216,675
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.30 (w) x 9.31 (h) x 0.43 (d)

Meet the Author

PAMELA S. TURNER has written many science and nature articles for adults and books for children, including Hachiko: The True Story of a Loyal Dog and Gorilla Doctors: Saving Endangered Great Apes, an American Library Association Notable Book and winner of the ASPCA Henry Bergh Award. She lives in Oakland, California, with her family.

www.pamelasturner.com

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