Through simple text and watercolor illustrations, Curtis and Yee explain the arduous and time-consuming task of cleaning birds, amphibians, mammals, and other animals and setting them free. Narrated in the first person plural, the book stresses the workers’ devotion to the animals. Several pages of further information, including ways to prevent oil spills and help injured animals, are appended. A wildlife identification page encourages close observation, and a short interview with the head of the Bird Rescue group discusses the mission of the organization. VERDICT An unusual look at the effects of oil spills on wildlife, and a useful tool for teaching early elementary students about environmental science.
–Eva Elisabeth VonAncken, formerly at Trinity-Pawling School,
On the U.S. East Coast, a team from the Delaware-based Tri-State Bird Rescue & Research rescues birds and animals from oil spills of all kinds. Their process involves capture, treatment, including extensive scrubbing, and time for recovery before release. Yee’s digitally colored drawings are realistic. Knowledgeable readers will recognize the painted turtle, great blue herons, mallards, Canada geese, bald eagle, and mergansers in the hands of wildlife rehabilitators, veterinarians, and support staff or paddling happily in recovery pools. Peeking out of cages in their rescue truck are others: a wood duck, a muskrat, a cormorant. The variety is impressive. The men and women working with these injured animals represent different ages and races. The relatively simple text is printed directly on the illustrations in a large font. The use of first-person plural emphasizes the teamwork involved. As with other books from this publisher, backmatter includes further information: suggestions for things readers can do, a picture-identification puzzle, and an interview with the organization’s executive director. A straightforward description of how some humans are working to help animals affected by the oils we all use.
This illustrated nonfiction story by author Jennifer Keats Curtis and illustrator Tammy Yee is based on the extensive experience of the Oiled Wildlife Response Team at Tri-State. While very highly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library Wildlife picture book collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "River Rescue" is also available in a paperback edition (9781607188353, $9.95).2019
River Rescue, written for 6 - 9 year olds and filled with information for anyone who wants to know about the team's meticulous and demanding efforts, starts by telling readers how pelicans covered with oil can neither fly nor swim. They have special feathers that lock together to act as a drysuit. Without this layer, the pelicans get cold; when they try to clean their feathers, they ingest oil, which makes them sick.
River Rescue provides an informative look into animal rescue and rehabilitation and encourages good environmental citizenship among readers. The earth-toned art is realistic and the text is easy to understand.
Oil spills are extremely harmful to animals and their environment. Thankfully, there are a handful of specialized teams who care for the animals who have been affected by oil spills and other harmful environmental factors. River Resuce is a book that tells about the Tri-State Bird Rescue & Research, Inc. Although the pictures are colored illustrations, the story tells the trueness of how this team works to save animals. This is an interesting account of the work and dedication that goes into rescuing animals, especially birds. It takes a lot more than just "washing the oil off". Reading this book gave me a bigger appreciation of these experts and what they do to save wildlife.
Fortunately there are people that can help. “River Rescue” by Jennifer Keats Curtis and Tri-State Bird Rescue and Research Inc tells the story of some of these caring people. This book, from Arbordale Publishing teaches young readers how people can aid birds involved in a tragic oil or fuel spill. A fantastic way to teach your little one to help the world we live in.
I love the up-close-and-personal view into wildlife rescue. I didn’t know it took that long to wash and rinse off gloopy, sticky oil! I like the back matter: a section about preventing oil spills, a wildlife identification challenge, and an interview with the director of the rescue center.