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Background information is always useful when you are starting a new assignment. This is particularly useful when you know very little about your topic. Having some background information will help you understand the information you are reading for your notetaking.
The following links are to the Britannica database. You may need a username and password to enter the database. Click on the Username and Password button on the right hand of this page.
"Penguins are the only birds that can swim but cannot fly. Fossils of these sea birds date to about 50 million years ago." Click this link to continue reading.
"The ocean bird called the albatross is known for its ability to fly long distances with very little effort." Click this link to continue reading.
"Hummingbirds are birds with long, slender bills that are adapted for taking a sweet liquid called nectar from flowers." Click this link to continue reading.
Adaptations and Survival
Work through this mini slideshow (includes voice over, explanations and short quizes) to understand how different organisms are adapted to survive in their environment.
Create a Creature
Explore the body parts of small creatures and create your own!
Meet Spikey, Thorny and Carnivorous Plants!
Explore some amazing ways that plants can survive in their habitats. See plants that mimic stones. Discover how some plants use weapons to protect themselves. Meet plants that trap their victims to feed on them.
Learn how Antarctic animals are adapted to life in their environment.
What wildlife would you expect to see in and around Antarctica? Come aboard the Australian ice breaker Aurora Australis to find out. How have these animals adapted to the harsh environment?
Antarctic Animals Adapting to the Cold
The Antarctic region is one of the most extreme habitats in the world and animals need special adaptations to survive these conditions.
"Explore natural selection by controlling the environment and causing mutations in bunnies."
Basic Facts About Hummingbirds
"Hummingbirds are small, colorful birds with iridescent feathers. Their name comes from the fact that they flap their wings so fast (about 80 times per second) that they make a humming noise."
The Magnificent Macquarie Island Wandering Albatross
"Every year four to fifteen pairs of Wandering Albatross call Macquarie Island home. They reside mostly on the south-west part of the island."
The Circle: Frozen Laboratory
"Organisms that survive and reproduce must be suited to their environments, obtaining essential energy and materials while coping with enemies and competitors."
"If you’re an avid bird watcher, you notice that hummingbirds have a unique behavior when compared to other birds."
"Wetlands take many forms, depending on whether they are on the coast, in estuaries, on floodplains and around rivers and lakes."
"Ruby-throated Hummingbirds occur in deciduous woodlands of eastern North America as well as across the Canadian prairies."
Fun Hummingbird Facts for Kids
"Hummingbirds are New World birds found only in the Americas, mainly South America."
Why Did Penguins Stop Flying?
It seems penguins couldn't have it all; they couldn't swim AND fly.