Ranger Rick: January 1978

Scarlet King Snake indelibly stamped on my mind. Pleasantest snake I ever saw.

Welcome to the final post of this Ranger Rick trio. No squirrels to be found below, but I hope you will press on and enjoy these timeless photos of nature. Above, no friend of rodents, but a good friend of mine: a Scarlet King Snake gracing the cover of the first Ranger Rick I ever received.

I don’t believe I ever noticed this zebra colt was named Pitsi, but the images of his birth are part of me!

Note the signed pledge in the image above. I was devoted immediately! This zebra mom and colt and birth sac, well, another immortal image as long as my synapses are snapping. His first steps reflect my first steps in conservation.

A lesson on pesticidal resistance I’ve never forgotten, now returned in the realm of antibiotics talk. The word “pathogen” is used in this one—an awesome word for a six-and-a-half-year-old to be exposed to!

This issue is jammed with content, and I love how articles refer to articles from previous issues. An article about pawpaws, Happy Bee tidbits, a Q&A on rabbits and hares, Nature Club News featuring a kid-made wildlife quilt and…

There was no alphabet entry in the special Canada issue, although there was a lynx and a Lansdowne in it.

Ranger Rick’s Wild Alphabet had quite an impressive kavalkade of “k” animals, with more striking images of the kinkajou, kiwi, krait, and koran! Ranger Rick and His friends appear in their monthly tale, again by the sea, again featuring a sea turtle, and this time with the gulls mentioned in other issues appearing as menaces to baby turtles! The theme of gulls in Ranger Rick stories needs to be examined.

Anatomy of the many-chambered nautilus

The issue’s highlight might be the dense, almost poetic description of the life of the Nautilus, “Sailor of the South Pacific. Maker of fine castles. Mighty Mollusk.” And the word, “nacre,” what a word the be reminded of. On to some games and crafts, and this most memorable of jokes:

Q. How do two octopuses walk along the beach? A. Arm in arm, in arm, in arm, in arm, in arm, in arm, in arm.

Speed is a key. Who was the grand prize winner? The Spine-tailed Swift, aka White-throated Needletail, aka Needle-tailed Swift, aka Hirundapas caudacutus at 106 mph (170 kph).

The issue winds up with the above and a chickadee Q&A from readers with a special story from one girl and her dad and a bold Black-capped Chickadee named Chico. Never underestimate the power of squeaky noises and seed in drawing a chickadee close! This is followed by an article celebrating its varied vocalizations.

And the back cover is a close-up of a horsefly’s rainbow-striped eyes. With its usual combination of fun and learning, a sentence asks readers how many striped animals they can find in this issue, encouraging a re-scan of what they’ve just read. Brilliant photo and caption.

Well, that’s it for this visit to a trio of National Wildlife Federation (NWF) Ranger Ricks from long ago. I have re-subscribed to see how much things have changed or (I vainly hope) stayed the same, so there may be more to come!


About stevesunusual

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1 Response to Ranger Rick: January 1978

  1. Pingback: Snake Peep | stevesunusual...music and more

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