Grade 3-6-Jamal, a fifth grader from a pet-loving family, narrates this lucid guide to keeping lizards. After briefly describing the physical and behavioral characteristics of bearded dragons (he owns two) and their natural habitats (Australia), the boy suggests where to purchase them and offers tips on choosing healthy specimens. He then explains what equipment is necessary to provide the right kind of environment for the reptiles, how to maintain the proper temperature and humidity within the cage, appropriate diet, how to handle lizards, and how to recognize signs of illness. In a separate chapter, Jamal discusses their characteristics and points out the ways in which their care differs from that of bearded dragons. In the final chapter, the budding herpetologist describes his attempts to breed his pets; so far, no eggs have hatched. Interspersed within the main text are six pages of facts. Clear, full-color photographs show how responsible pet owners should handle their animals. Although the book focuses on specific kinds of lizards, the information is basic enough to be useful for owners of a variety of species available in pet stores. This logically organized, practical title will be a welcome addition to the pet sections of most libraries.
Karey Wehner, San Francisco Public Library
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