Under the Snow
By Melissa Stewart, illustrated by Constance R Bergum
32 pages, for ages 4-8
Peachtree Publishers 2009
Winter seems like a quiet time. Except for the birds at the feeder – and the squirrels crouched below, waiting for the cascade of rejected millet as the chickadees pick through for sunflower seeds – there’s little activity outside.
But there’s a lot going on under the snow, and Melissa Stewart takes us on a wintry field trip in her lovely book, Under the Snow. This book offers a lyrical tour of habitats and the animals that live there in the winter. You’ll meet ladybugs snuggled into a crevice in a stone wall and a meadow vole that nibbles bark off a tree trunk for mid-winter snacks. In my garden the voles simply tunnel under the mulch and snack on the rutabagas I forgot to harvest…
Stewart, along with Bergum’s wonderful watercolors, introduce us to the secret world of insects sleeping beneath the snow, the wood frog beneath leaves, a woodchuck snug in his burrow. They also show us the slow-moving bluegills and carp in the pond, under the ice.
My favorite spread is red-spotted newts dodging and darting just below the ice. Now I want to go down to the neighbor’s pond and clear off the ice to see whether the newts are swimming there. As soon as it stops snowing, of course.
This post is part of the Nonfiction Monday Round-Up hosted this week by Tales from the Rushmore Kid.