A follow up to Over and Under the Snow and Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt, this time focusing on the rich, interconnected ecosystem of a mountain pond. As parent and child launch a canoe from the muddy shore and paddle through water lilies, they see frogs jump and painted turtles slide off logs, disappearing beneath the murky water. What’s happening down there? Under the pond, leeches lurk, crayfish scuttle under rocks, nymphs build intricate shells, and microscopic animals break down fallen leaves to recharge the water with nutrients. Over the pond, fuzzy cattails sway in the breeze, and a pair of loons swim by, laughing in the dappled sunlight.
An author’s note discusses not only the different organisms featured, but also the truly remarkable balance of this wetland ecosystem, the way plants and animals create a chemical balance that sustains the lives of the pond.