Symbiosis is a close and long-term biological relationship between two different species. Sometimes both benefit. Sometimes only one benefits. So you might want to study up before you develop that new “friendship” …
Natural Attraction: A Field Guide to Friends, Frenemies, and Other Symbiotic Animal, by Iris Gottlieb
Watercolor illustrations combine with a humorous, scientific text to examine thirty-five odd and unusual symbiotic animal, plant, and bacteria relationships. It includes statistics, graphs, takeaways, and fun additional facts about mutualism, commensalism, and parasitism.
Symbiosis, by Alvin Silverstein
Photographs and a sprinkling of fun fact sidebars enhance the examination of plants, animals and fungi partnerships (both beneficial and necessary), symbiosis of numerous parasites and microorganisms (including Ebola and SARS), and the possibility of symbionts from space. The engaging text is supplemented with scientific terms, a glossary, and further research suggestions.
Partners in the Sea, by Mary Jo Rhodes and David Hall
You’ve probably heard about cleaner fish, but there are so many more undersea partnerships. There are fish that hang out in anemones, tiny crabs and shrimps that live inside sponges, and a bunch of animals that partner up with algae.
There’s A Zoo on You! by Kathy Darling
You share your body with more than a thousand microscopic species of bacteria, fungi, and other too-small to see organisms. Some are beneficial, such as tooth amoebas that eat bacteria. Others, like some fungi, take advantage of the relationship by benefiting at our expense.
It’s a Fungus Among Us: The Good, the Bad & the Downright Scary, by Carla Billups and Dawn Cusick
Most land plants live in a symbiotic relationship with fungi, and use the fungal web to share information with their plant buddies in the garden, field, and woods. Some animals develop beneficial partnerships with fungi, too – but others are attacked by fungal parasites.
Things That Make You Go Yuck! Odd Couples, by Jenn Dlugos & Charlie Hatton
Everything on earth is involved in a symbiotic relationship, some good and some bad. Amazing close-up photographs coupled with trivia questions, humor, sidebars, and a dash of gross-out facts makes this book on animal, plant, and microorganism adaptation and survival an entertaining and educational read about some unusual and creepy relationships.
Forest Talk: How Trees Communicate, by Melissa Koch
Trees are talking all around us, using an underground network of fungi and roots to communicate with one another. They also share chemical messages from their leaves, sending defense signals to other plants when pests attack.
Plant Partnerships, by Joyce Pope
An examination of the dependence of numerous plants and lichen on other plants and animals for their habitat or survival. Covers instances of symbiosis, parasitism, gardening, and pollination by insects and mammals.
STEM Tuesday book list prepared by:
Sue Heavenrich writes about science for children and their families, from space to backyard ecology. A long line of ants marching across the kitchen counter inspired her first article for kids. When not writing, she’s committing acts of citizen science in the garden. She blogs about science for kids and families at archimedesnotebook.blogspot.com.
Maria is a children’s author, blogger, and poet passionate about making nature and reading fun for children. She’s been a judge for the Cybils Awards from 2017 to present. And a judge for the #50PreciousWords competition since its inception. Her poems are published in The Best Of Today’s Little Ditty 2017-2018, 2016, and 2014-2015 anthologies. When not writing, critiquing, or reading, she bird watches, travels the world, bakes, and hikes. Visit her at www.mariacmarshall.com.