An International Reading Association Children's Book Awards Notable Book for 2003
Raccoon Moonby Nancy Carol Willis
Describing a year in the life of a raccoon family as the mother teaches her cubs to climb trees, find food, and survive predators, this fun and educational wildlife guide teaches children about one of North America's most intelligent and ubiquitous mammals. Detailed illustrations portray the birth and rapid development of the cubs, the cubs learning to catch a frog
Describing a year in the life of a raccoon family as the mother teaches her cubs to climb trees, find food, and survive predators, this fun and educational wildlife guide teaches children about one of North America's most intelligent and ubiquitous mammals. Detailed illustrations portray the birth and rapid development of the cubs, the cubs learning to catch a frog and eat a fiddler crab, and mother raccoon defending her cubs from a ferocious predator. Also included are facts about the raccoon name and range, raccoon relatives and trivia, tips on helping injured or orphaned raccoon cubs, and handling techniques and recipes for temporary diets approved by the Delaware Wildlife Rehabilitators Association.
Read an Excerpt
By Nancy Carol Willis
Birdsong BooksCopyright © 2002 Birdsong Books
All rights reserved.
Around April moon rises over an old silver maple tree. Inside the hollow trunk, raccoon cubs are being born. Rusty, Rudy and Spice are only four inches long. They cannot see or hear. Each weighs two ounces, about as much as a candy bar.
"Err, err, err," they cry. Mother raccoon gently nudges the cubs onto her belly, where they nurse on warm milk.
Three weeks later, the cubs open their eyes. As their fur grows, black markings begin to appear on their faces and tails. Rudy has seven tail rings. Spice has gray body fur. Rusty is reddish-brown.
Mother raccoon leaves the den to hunt for grasshoppers, birds eggs and earthworm. While she is gone, the cubs cuddle together to keep warm.
One month passes, and the moon is full again. The cubs have grown to weigh two pounds, sixteen times more than when they were born.
Rusty climbs up mother raccoon's back. Spice nips her thick fur with new baby teeth. For once, Rusty sits still while mother raccoon licks his face to clean it. "Churr, churr," he purrs.
The cubs peer from the den opening as mother raccoon climbs headfirst down the tree to hunt for food.
Spice sniffs the salt marsh air, then digs her sharp claws into the tree bark and climbs out of the den. She wraps her forearms around the trunk and inches upward - higher, higher. Suddenly, her hind feet slip. Spice dangles two stories high.
"Waaa," she shrieks. "Mother, help!" Mother raccoon scrambles up the tree. She gently closes her mouth around Spice's neck and carries the cub back to the den. Soon the cubs will climb like experts.
Excerpted from Raccoon Moon by Nancy Carol Willis. Copyright © 2002 Birdsong Books. Excerpted by permission of Birdsong Books.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Meet the Author
Nancy Carol Willis is a writer and illustrator of natural science articles that have appeared in Outdoor Delaware magazine and is the creator of educational posters for the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control. She is the author of The Robins in Your Backyard, which was named outstanding from a learning perspective by the Parent Council. She lives in Middletown, Delaware.
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