From Xplor for Kids
April 2013 Issue

Strange But True

Publish Date

Apr 01, 2013

Your guide to all the unusual, unique, and unbelieveable stuff that goes on in nature

  • Hercules beetles make human weight lifters look like wimps. The brawny bugs can push press 850 times their weight. To do the same, an Olympian would need to lift more than 150,000 pounds!
  • Feathers in a flash: Six days after hatching, yellow-billed cuckoo chicks go from basically bare to fully feathered in about two hours. Three days later, they take flight.
  • Although perfect for predator protection, an armadillo’s armor is heavy. To cross wide rivers, armadillos gulp air until their stomachs blow up like balloons, then they float across. To ford narrow streams, they simply walk along the bottom.
  • Here’s the scoop on wild turkey poop: Male turkeys usually leave J-shaped droppings. Female turkeys leave spiralshaped droppings.
  • Sucking blood makes a dog tick feel, well, swell. Female ticks suck enough blood to swell to more than 100 times their normal weight. If you packed on pounds by the same factor, you’d weigh more than a minivan!
  • Meadow jumping mice are the kings of spring. When startled, the gerbil-sized rodents can leap 12 feet in a single bound. If you had the same spring in your step, you wouldn’t have problems jumping over two school buses parked end to end.

Also in this issue

You Discover

April and May are Goldilocks months — not too hot nor too cold. Wildflowers pop up, songbirds migrate, and fish finally find their appetites. Here are just a few things to discover.

Predator vs. Prey: Fawn vs. Coyote

The struggle to survive isn't always a fair fight. Here's what separates nature's winners from its losers.

How To: Plant a Tree

What's the best way to celebrate Arbor Day? Plant a tree!

The Sweet Shell of Success

Speed isn't everything. Missouri's turtles take life slowly in stride.

Fishing with Grandpa Charlie

Eryn and Lauren love to go fishing with their Grandpa Charlie. Tag along as they try to catch a tasty fish with a funny name — crappie.

This Issue's Staff:

David Besenger
Les Fortenberry
Karen Hudson
Regina Knauer
Noppadol Paothong
Marci Porter
Mark Raithel
Laura Scheuler
Matt Seek
Tim Smith
David Stonner
Nichole LeClair Terrill
Stephanie Thurber
Cliff White

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