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The Dolphins of Shark Bay

(Scientists in the Field)

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  132 ratings  ·  64 reviews
Ride alongside the author Pamela S. Turner and her scientific team and meet a cast of dolphin characters large enough (and charismatic enough) to rival a Shakespearean play—Puck, Piccolo, Flute, and Dodger among them. You will fall in love with this crew, both human and finned, as they seek to answer the question: just why are dolphins so smart? And what does their behavio ...more
Hardcover, Scientists in the Field, 80 pages
Published November 5th 2013 by HMH Books for Young Readers
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4.12  · 
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 ·  132 ratings  ·  64 reviews

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Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
After finishing this book, I felt like I'd taken a trip to the east coast of Australia! Turner accompanies scientist Janet Mann and her team as they research bottlenose dolphins in Shark Bay. The book grabbed me right from the beginning when I learned that some of these dolphins, almost always female, have discovered that they can use a sponge to probe the ocean floor for fish to eat, thereby protecting their noses from injury by the rough coral and rocks. Dolphins using tools! I learned that do ...more
Richie Partington
Sep 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Richie's Picks: THE DOLPHINS OF SHARK BAY (SCIENTISTS IN THE FIELD) by Pamela S. Turner and Scott Tuason, photo., Houghton Mifflin, November 2013, 80p., ISBN: 978-0-547-71638-1

"I gotta get out of bed get a hammer and a nail
Learn how to use my hands"
-- Indigo Girls

"Just as we humans are using tools (for us, a boat and binoculars), this dolphin is too. Some Shark Bay dolphins use a squishy sea sponge to protect their nose (called the rostrum) as they rummage along a channel bottom. When a spongin
Lisa Ard
Oct 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing
In this Scientists in the Field series book, author Pamela S. Turner gives readers a look at the life of a dolphin scientist and her team off the western coast of Australia. Cruising on the bay, these researchers ask questions, form hypotheses, and design ways to get answers to big questions such as: why are dolphins smart? why do dolphins play? how do dolphins live and die?

The book goes further than the basics of dolphins, to introduce readers to lesser known facts. Did you know dolphins use t
Jan 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Part of the Scientists in the Field nonfiction series, this book examines a pack of dolphins who live in Monkey Mia, Australia. These dolphins are especially of note because they have learned to use tools. Like the other Scientists books, there is background given on the researching scientist, and there is a rough storyline, though each chapter explores a different area of the subjects' lives.

I'm an adult, and I learned so much about dolphins from reading this book! It does a good job of explain
Another delightful book in the "Scientists in the Field" series, a real joy for both young readers and old farts alike. Who knew that the dolphins of Shark Bay (aka, Monkey Mia, but "Shark Bay" just sounds more badass) are the world's only marine mammals known to use tools? Well, probably my GR buddy Ian, because he actually lives in nearby Perth - but certainly not me!

Only possible - if unavoidable - complaint: lot of illustrations here, but they're pretty much all just photos of dolphins. Jump
Tammi Peterman
Twin Text: One White Dolphin by Gill Lewis (copyright June 2012).

Rationale: The Dolphins of Shark Bay focuses on the study of dolphins by a group led by a female biologist. This group studies dolphins in their natural environment and discusses the intelligence of dolphins. Similarly One White dolphin is the story of girl who lost her mother, a marine biologist, on a dolphin expedition only to find comfort in finding and nurturing an injured baby dolphin. The book is a dramatic story interwoven w
Oak Lawn Public Library - Youth Services
Age: 10-14 yrs

Length: 80 pgs

Summary: This book is part of the Scientists in the Field series. The setting is Shark Bay in Australia and the author describes the research and observations of Janet Mann and her crew on the Pomboo. She has been studying these dolphins for over 25 years and knows them as well as you know your friends and family.

Recommendations or Comments: This was an interesting book. Not only do you learn about the dolphins themselves, but you also learn about the scientists study
In this Scientists in the Field book, author Pamela S. Turner follows scientist Janet Mann as she researches the dolphins around Monkey Mia, a part of Shark Bay in Western Australia. Shark Bay seems to have conditions ideal for dolphins, and so there are many wild dolphins here. Janet and her team have found something unique to the dolphins do Shark Bay; some of them use tools! Discussions of the use of sponges as tools, as well as other dolphin behavior are deftly woven into the story of Turner ...more
The books in the Scientists in the Field series are almost always informative and well written, and this latest addition does not disappoint. Filled with colorful photographs and sparkling text that draw readers into the topic, the book focuses on dolphins living in Shark Bay, Australia. These dolphins use sponges as tools to aid them in gathering fish to ear, and have been the focus of study by scientist Janet Mann and her research team. The book's author follows Mann and her crew as they obser ...more
Dec 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jnf, school-age
I feel like some of the content may be even too advanced for school age children, which is the intended audience. That being said, this is amazing. I studied animal behavior in college and LOVED that class, and was blown away by the skills that the dolphins had learned over generations. The dolphins used TOOLS to forage. TOOLS!! How cool is that?

I enjoyed learning the names of the dolphins that lived in Shark Bay, the social structure of dolphin society, mating behavior, parenting, friendships,
Elizabeth S
Excellent nonfiction read. The author gave facts, described research, and made the subject interesting for just about anyone. The photos were not only excellent, by also matched well with the text. For example, the opening paragraph of the book described a scientist standing on the dashboard of her boat with her toes gripping the steering wheel. For anyone uncertain how to visualize that, there is a nice, big picture showing that exact setup.

I love how many of today's juvenile nonfictions add e
The Styling Librarian
The Dolphins of Shark Bay by Pamela S. Turner with photographs by Scott Tuason - I absolutely loved getting lost in this book. I adore dolphins. Learning about dolphins and their innovations was incredible. Loved how research was developed and described in this book. Interesting to learn about the concept of culture within dolphin groups. Additionally appreciated how the book addressed people’s influence on the dolphin communities and how some research and evidence helped a government protect do ...more
Jan 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Dolphins of Shark Bay is another fine entry in the Scientists in the Field series. Telling the story of dolphin researchers in a remote Australian cove, Turner explores their world in a fascinating way. I love the way the author injected her voice into the narrative. Narrative nonfiction needs that assertive voice in order for it to work and Turner has it in spades. When she called one of the dolphins a jerk because of his behavior, I "HA"ed on the subway to the horror of the older woman sit ...more
This book gives readers a day-in-the-life experience of a dolphin researcher. Dolphin intelligence is examined and explained and much focus and study is devoted to tool use.

What made this such a fascinating book for me was the discussion of dolphin socialization and the different behaviors exhibited by cliques within the dolphin community in Shark Bay.

Recommended for grades 5-8. Love this series!
Aug 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Fascinating! Who would have guessed that animals without hands would be tool-users? Turner's writing is as wonderful as the subject and the photographs are amazing. Challenging, funny and completely engaging, this is another in the stellar Scientist in the Field series.
Stellar book about dolphins and what and how we can learn from them. Highlights include the complex relationships between individual dolphins. Highly recommended to middle grade readers and up.
Brenda Kahn
Another sterling entry in this series. This one's a bit more relaxed and conversational but no less rich in science. Spectacular photos on each page. End notes with more information. Must purchase.
Oct 24, 2017 added it
Shelves: read-3090-21-30

Summary: This book follows Pamela S. Turner and her team as they go on an adventure to answer the question “Why are dolphins so smart?”. Turner and her team couldn’t answer their questions without the help of some friendly dolphins of Shark Bay.

Evaluation: This book was so extremely informative. The pictures showed the beautiful creatures that dolphins are. It brought to life just how amazing dolphins are. I liked how the pictures were of the dolphins where they are supposed to be not fro

Myra Blake
Sep 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2017
This is a really interesting and informative book with lots of great pictures. I was drawn to it because I love dolphins and the cover, which features a photo of a dolphin in shallow water, is bright and colorful.

I think this is a great book for older children through adults. Even younger children would probably enjoy looking at all the pictures and having someone read aloud to them from this book. The only reason I didn't give it 5 stars is because some of the "lingo" can be a bit confusing, bu
Jan 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A very impressive account based on time the author spent with dolphin researchers at Monkey Mia (Australia). Includes personal stories about the researchers, and information about the dolphins derived from scientific studies. Terrific photos help to introduce the characters described - both animal and human- and build the feel of what it's like to be in this very special place in Australia.
This is a great book for young independent readers interested in dolphins and/or in becoming biologists. #S
My 6 year old really likes this book. As mom reading aloud to her, I found the journal-ish format a little difficult and not very smooth reading. We would often skip around and read more about what was happening in the photos.
May 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
If you aren't already fond of dolphins, you will be after reading this well researched and humorously written book with its many beautiful photos about the dolphins along the west coast of Australia.
Mar 14, 2017 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-new
Nov 30, 2013 added it
Turner, P. (2013). The dolphins of Shark Bay. (Photos by S. Tuason). Boston: Houghton Mifflin. 80 pp. ISBN: 978-0-547-71638-1. (Hardcover); $18.99.

In this Scientists in the Field volume, Turner explores the intelligence of the dolphins that inhabit Shark Bay in Australia. Describing the research and observations of Janet Mann over more than twenty-five years, Turner’s excellent text makes readers feel as if they have arrived in Shark Bay. These dolphins have adapted to their habitat and have le
Jessica Gilligan
Dec 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: libs-642
Turner, Pamela S. (2013) The Dolphins of Shark Bay. Houghton Mifflin Books for Children: New York, NY.

Junior Book Log: Informational

School Library Journal Starred Review

In this book, author Pamela Turner travels to Shark Bay, which is off the western coast of Australia, with researches to learn about bottlenose dolphins in that area. The researchers have been studying these dolphins for 25 years. Dolphins are the second most intelligent creatures on the planet (second to humans of course). And
Jas F
Apr 05, 2014 rated it liked it
The Dolphins of Shark Bay by Pamela S. Turner main message is how much humans underestimated the intelligence of Dolphins. Pamela Turner's aspect on life isn that maybe humans are one of the smartest creatures nonetheless, dolphins are not far behind. Some of the main characters are a dolphin crew lead by Pamela Turner and other dolphins such as Puck, Dodger, Piccolo, and Flute. Pamela Turner and friend explore the world of dolphins where they meet a extremely smart group of dolphins that have d ...more
May 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: animal interests
As with many in the Scientists in the Field series, this was superb. The photography was excellent, the text was fascinating, and don't miss the affectionate afterword buried after the acknowledgments in the back after you finish the book! The big question the scientist, Janet Mann, had, was stipulated, dolphins are next to humans in intelligence but WHY are they so intelligent? Brain cells take a lot more energy than other cells so there is extra effort needed to nourish those cells. While expl ...more
Dec 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
I learn so much when I read these Scientists in the Field books! Here are just a few of the things I learned about dolphins while reading this book:

* After humans, bottlenose dolphins have the largest brain size in comparison to their body size of any other animal.

* Some bottlenose dolphins at Shark Bay in Australia have learned to use sponges as tools to help them fish. They teach this skill to their children. This is a very rare skill among dolphins.

* Dolphins don't breathe automatically like
Jan 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014reviews
I enjoy reading nonfiction with a true narrative. The Dolphins of Shark Bay has personality. This nonfiction book for young readers presents research about bottlenose dolphins in Australia's Shark Bay. But. It is done with great enthusiasm. There are plenty of general facts included, of course, about dolphins: female dolphins, male dolphins, dolphin calves, the general socialization, the mating of dolphins, various things putting the dolphins at risk, etc. But the reason why this one is oh-so-co ...more
Aimee Martin
Apr 26, 2016 rated it liked it
The Dolphins of Shark Bay

The Dolphins of Shark Bay by Pamela S. Turner and photographs taken by Scott Tuason is all about the different types of dolphins that live in Shark Bay. I learned that there are eight different types of dolphins that live in Shark Bay. There was a lot of information about the dolphins and I learned that Dolphins make mates and they always stick with that mate they make. Shiver and Samu and are two friends that stuck together for 5 years now.

This informational picture boo
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I was very interested in books as a child. I still remember how hard I worked as a four-year-old at learning to write my name because my mother promised I could have a library card as soon as I could scrawl "PAMELA." When my parents made me turn my bedroom lights out at night, I would read by the tiny red light on the temperature control for my electric blanket. I grew up in Riverside--a rather ho ...more

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