Creepy & Crawly

9781629207384. Miller, Tessa. Wings & Beaks. ISBN 9781629207360.ea vol: 48p. (Animal Tech). further reading. glossary. index. photos. websites. Full Tilt. Sept. 2018. lib. ed. $27.99.
Gr 5–8—Each book explores six instances of biomimicry. Coverage includes historical examples (sonar), current items (shark-inspired swimsuits), and products currently in development. Well-organized chapters introduce a technological challenge, such as wind turbine efficiency, and the related animal feature, such as the humpback whale's flippers. Details about how scientists adapt nature are explained in terms that are clear and fairly easy to follow. The most complex topics, such as antivirus software that mimics ants, are presented in broader terms, without overly technical details. Separate photographs of the animal and of the human-made object appear on every spread, keeping the nature-machine relationship at the forefront. A "Tech in Action" spread then recaps the key common elements with side-by-side photos and diagrams. Titles conclude with instructions for a classroom activity based on a biomimicry example.
VERDICT Engaging combination of nature and current technology.

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