Heartwarming, surprising, and downright bizarre creature connections
Relationships can be complicated, and it’s no different in the wild. Meet 60 dynamic duos across the plant and animal kingdoms—from “aww” to “eek”!
The Eltham copper butterfly and the Notoncus ant are BFFs for life. The ants lovingly raise the butterflies’ caterpillar babies, while feasting on the sweet substance the caterpillars produce. Everybody wins in this prime example of mutualism.
The pseudoscorpian is a total freeloader. When it wants to get around, it boards the back of the giant harlequin beetle, in a one-sided setup called commensalism.
Parasitism is where things get spooky. Learn how the green-banded broodsac (a type of flatworm) first invades the eyestalk of the amber snail, then tricks it into getting eaten by a bird—inside which the broodsac will grow up. Yikes!
Award-winning author and illustrator Sami Bayly shows us a whole world of wild companions like these—many endangered—and reminds us that we're all inseparable.
Publisher’s Note: A Curious Collection of Wild Companions was previously published in Australia as The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Peculiar Pairs in Nature.
About the Author
Sami Bayly is a natural history illustrator who loves all things weird and wonderful. She finds the beauty and importance of all animals regardless of their appearance. Her first book, A Curious Collection of Peculiar Creatures, won the Children’s Indie Book of the Year Award and the Australian Book Design Award for Younger Readers. It was a CBCA Honour Book and was shortlisted for an ABIA Book of the Year for Younger Children and longlisted for the ABA Booksellers’ Choice 2020 Book of the Year Awards. Her second book, A Curious Collection of Dangerous Creatures, was a CBCA Honour Book, an ABIA Book of the Year for Younger Children, won an Australian Book Design Award for Younger Readers, and was shortlisted for the Children’s Indie Book of the Year 2020.
Praise for A Curious Collection of Dangerous Creatures
#1 Indie Bestseller Amazon Editors’ Pick—Best Nonfiction for Kids Shortlisted for the 2021 Indie Book Awards, Best Children’s Book of the Year Shortlisted for the Children’s Book Council of Australia 2021 Book of the Year
Praise for A Curious Collection of Peculiar Creatures
An Indie Bestseller Amazon Editors’ Pick—Best Nonfiction for Kids An Indie Book Awards Best Children's Book of the Year, 2020
“The perfect gift for curious young minds”—Mountain Life
“This informative book with spectacular illustrations of ugly animals will inform, entertain, and promote discussion about what is ugly and what is not.”—The Sunday Telegraph,4.5 stars
“Enough of the cute and cuddly, time to rethink the dichotomy of beauty and ugliness and to celebrate the weird and wonderful. Bayly researched and painted 60 of the world’s most aesthetically challenged animals for her encyclopedia.”—Sydney Morning Herald