Endangered Butterflies


32 pages
Contains Photos, Illustrations, Index
ISBN 0-7787-1916-2
DDC j595.78'9




Reviewed by Alice Kidd

Alice Kidd is an editor with The New Catalyst editorial collective in
Lillooet, B.C.


The well-designed format that worked for earlier volumes in this series
on monk seals, tigers, rhinoceroses, and sea turtles is used again in
these volumes: two-page spreads, lots of colourful pictures and
drawings, informative captions and sidebars—all book-ended with a
table of contents at the front and a glossary and index at the back. Key
terms appear in bold type and are defined either in the text or in the

Each volume engages our interest with a section on risk. According to
Endangered Bats, for example, there are 1,000 species of bats and about
a quarter of those are endangered. The section “What are... ”
follows. Endangered Manatees, for example, identifies these mammals as
warm-blooded vertebrates.

Each animal is located in its place in the tree of life and in its
global range. Endangered Komodo Dragons describes the reptiles as
lizards of the Monitor group that live on several hot, dry Indonesian
islands. Body types are linked to specific lifestyle and habitat.
Amphibians in Endangered Frogs have a variety of features that help them
adapt to both water and land habitats—different types of legs and toes
for climbing or swimming, and breathing systems that allow them to take
in oxygen through their mouths and through their skin.

The life cycle for each species is presented in text and diagram.
Endangered Butterflies provides an example of complete metamorphosis.
Some animals are very social. Endangered Elephants describes how these
giants interact in bathing, talking, and showing affection. Some animals
are at risk because of their dependence on a restricted food source.
Endangered Pandas points out that these animals “rarely eat anything
other than bamboo.” “Habitat loss” is another serious problem
affecting wildlife. In Endangered Leopards readers learn that when the
land is cleared of wild plants, the plant eaters who depend on the
plants as a food source die off, and when the plant eaters die off, the
leopards who depend on them as their food source often starve. As
habitat shrinks and food sources are reduced, animals become even more
stressed. Endangered Chimpanzees notes that the apes have fewer babies
and are at greater risk of being killed by poachers or captured for

But humans can help. Endangered Mountain Gorillas explains what
measures are being taken to help save this animal, such as setting aside
land for national parks, implementing new legislation to control
poaching and sales of body parts, and conducting educational campaigns
to help local farmers shift to a less-invasive agriculture. Endangered
Wolves points to studies in the wild and in zoos, captive breeding
programs, captured wolves being release into the wild, educational
programs, and fundraising for all these efforts as ways of protecting
this species.

To encourage further reading, a short list of websites and other
resources is included with each book. All of the books in this fine
series are recommended.


Kalman, Bobbie, and Robin Johnson., “Endangered Butterflies,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 20, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/29803.