"A stink bug's main weapon of defense is its oder. When in danger, the stink bug releases a stinking liquid from its thorax. A bird or other predator often takes one whiff of the bug's rotten smell and leaves the tiny creature alone!"
We were drawn to this book, as I said, because we see stink bugs in our house and garden. Last fall I was intrigued enough to do an online search to try to identify what was then to us a mysterious bug. I found out that our part of the country is in the midst of an infestation of these critters. We were encouraged to report sitings, as they are being monitored. There is one thing I still find mysterious: although the bugs we see meet every other descriptive criteria, they do not stink. I have crushed hundreds of them in the past two years and I have never noticed an odor of any sort. I wonder why. Here's a photo of one on my buddleia (look on the green leaf in the foreground):
Buddy and I enjoyed reading all about stink bugs in this World Book title. The series includes forty titles in four sets, covering animals from all around the world. In addition to teaching about bugs I was able to introduce non-fiction text features such as a table of context, index, glossary, fun facts page, list of further resources including books and web sites, and a scientific classification chart. In my library I often find that non-fiction titles are far more sought after than picture books in grades kindergarten through second grade. Children are thirsty for real knowledge and today's informational texts are creative, attractive and expertly crafted. Series such as this one are ideal for young scientists.