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Keep Earth Wild A photographer gives you a behind-the-scenes look at his quest to save animals.
Executive Vice President, Kids and Family Melina Gerosa Bellows Vice President, Content Jennifer Emmett Editor in Chief and Vice President, Kids Magazines & Digittal Rachel Buchholz Vice President, Visual Identity Eva Absher-Schantz Design Director, Magazines Eileen O’Tousa-Crowson Editorial Andrea Silen, Senior Editor / Digital Producer; Kay Boatner, Senior Editor / Digital Producer; Allyson Shaw, Associate Editor / Digital Producer; Rose Davidson, Assistant Editor / Digital Producer Art Kathryn Robbins, Senior Designer; Meghan Irving, Assistant Designer Photo Shannon Hibberd, Senior Photo Editor; Hilary Andrews, Associate Photo Editor Production Sean Philpotts, Director Digital Laura Goertzel, Director; Natalie Jones, Senior Product Manager; Tirzah Weiskotten, Video Manager
The Search for Planet Nine
Is a Neptune-size world hidden in our solar system?
PUBLISHED BY NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC PARTNERS, LLC Chief Executive Ofﬁcer Declan Moore Chairman of the Board of Directors Gary E. Knell Editorial Director Susan Goldberg
Discover facts about noise that’ll make you cheer.
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These hoofed creatures have some seriously stealthy moves.
Viking g Invasion Archaeo Archaeologists uncover a possible lost settlement in Canada.
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An injured animal gets back on her feet with the help of kindhearted humans.
3 30 Cool Things About Sound
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COVER: JOEL SARTORE / NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC PHOTO ARK / NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CREATIVE (SLOTH); RICHARD DU TOIT / MINDEN PICTURES (GIRAFFE); MOLLY MOORE (DOG). PAGE 3: JOEL SARTORE / NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC PHOTO ARK / NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CREATIVE (CLOUDED LEOPARD); MONDOLITHIC (PLANET NINE ART); JADIMAGES / SHUTTERSTOCK (RACCOON); LINDA FRESHWATERS ARNDT / GETTY IMAGES (BIRD); RICHARD DU TOIT / MINDEN PICTURES (GIRAFFE); SAM KENNEDY (VIKING ART)
NET M PLA
RESEARCHERS FOUND A NEW SPECIES OF SPIDER THAT PLAYS PEEKABOO TO ATTRACT MATES .
BY JULIE BEER AND MICHELLE HARRIS
AN EAR OF CORN CAN HAVE UP TO 1,200 KERNELS.
Located in Reutlingenâ€š Germa
the narrowest st
in the world is
one foot w
in the dark. Book and App
EPA EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY B.V. / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO (STREET); FORPLAYDAY / DREAMSTIME (MERCURY); CARY WOLINSKY / GETTY IMAGES (SHEEP); DAVID GRUBER / NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CREATIVE (TURTLE)
BY ELISABETH DEFFNER
© CONNY SCHMIDT / CATERS NEWS AGENCY (MAIN IMAGE, PETTING NECK); JURGEN AND CHRISTINE SOHNS / FLPA / MINDEN PICTURES (SAKI IN SIDEBAR); IAN BUTLER COSTA RICA / ALAMY (IGUANA IN SIDEBAR)
MONKEY DOTES ON IGUANA
WHITE-FACED SAKI RANGE South America
WEIGHT around 4 pounds
FACE OFF Only male white-faced sakis have white fur covering their faces. The fur on a female’s face is mostly brown.
SWEET TREATS Sakis eat fruit, honey, leaves, and flowers.
Krefeld‚ Germany This white-faced saki rarely scaled back her affection for her green iguana bestie. The saki, a type of monkey, loved petting and snuggling her reptile pal as they lounged together on tree branches at the Krefeld Zoo. The saki and iguana met after they were placed in the zoo’s Rain Forest House, a tree-filled enclosure that’s home to 40 different types of animals from tropical areas. “Both green iguanas and white-faced sakis spend most of their time in treetops,” zoo spokesperson Petra Schwinn says. “One day these two crossed paths.” The curious saki examined the reptile, patting its skin with her long fingers. The pals continued to have hangout sessions, eating together at the enclosure’s feeding station. But most of their “playdates” were in the trees and involved the saki petting the iguana and tickling his chin. The reptile, meanwhile, seemed to soak up the attention. Recently the animals moved to separate zoos. But keepers and visitors haven’t forgotten about their friendship. “They made a good team,” Schwinn says.
GREEN IGUANA RANGE Central and South America
WEIGHT 11 pounds
TALL TAIL If it’s caught by a predator, the green iguana can detach its tail and grow another.
FUNNY NAME These animals are sometimes referred to as “bamboo chickens.”
THE FEMAL SAKI PETS E IGUANA PA HER L.
HANGING OUT IN THEIR ENCLOSURE, THE PAIR MUGS FOR THE CAMERA.
BY C.M. TOMLIN
Underwater photographer Brian Skerry travels the planet to capture images of undersea habitats and the amazing marine life that dwells there.
y assistant and I had just surfaced near our boat after scuba diving off the coast of Ireland when a strong current suddenly swept us away. Soon we couldn’t see the boat anymore. We were lost at sea—and had no idea if we’d ever be found. We floated in open waters clutching our cameras for a terrifying two and a half hours before a boat picked us up. “This job can be dangerous and demanding. I’ve dived below glaciers in Canada to photograph harp seals and journeyed to sub-Antarctic waters south of New Zealand to snap pictures of 45-foot endangered right whales. It takes a lot of work. But one amazing 10-second moment in nature is worth all the days and months of preparation. “I believe that photos have the tremendous power to affect us. My work is all about seeing incredible animals and sharing my experiences so others can see them too. At the end of the day I’m a storyteller. I take pictures that tell stories to excite people about our world.”
WANT TO BE AN UNDERWATER PHOTOGRAPHER? STUDY: Marine biology and environmental science WATCH: The documentary Killer Whales: Wolves of the Sea READ: The Silent World by Jacques Cousteau
“Create your own opportunities. It’s essential to have a sense of adventure and passion.”
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BRIAN SKERRY SNAPS PHOTOS OF A KELP FOREST OFF THE COAST OF CALIFORNIA.
BRIAN J. SKERRY / NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CREATIVE (BIG PICTURE, ALL ANIMALS); BRIAN SKERRY / BARCROFT MEDIA / GETTY IMAGES (INSET)
o t E R
BY CRISPIN BOYER
ART BY JOE ROCCO
What would happen if woolly mammoths came back to life? This might have mammoth effects. Some think it could help curb global warming. How? Herds of now-extinct mammoths once lived on grasslands in and around the Arctic. They helped maintain their habitat by eating plants and, uh, depositing digested seeds, which grew into new plants. After the mammoths vanished, much of this grass did too. Soil releases carbon dioxide, a gas that warms the planet. Without plants to cover the ground here, more gas can get into the air. If mammoths returned, they might once again spread seeds and create a new layer of vegetation that’d keep a lot of the gas from entering the atmosphere. Sounds woolly cool.
What would happen if you could take an elevator to space? Pack a toothbrush. This ride would last two weeks! Scientists believe the elevator car would ascend a 60,000-mile-long cable that connects to a space station at over a hundred miles an hour. By the time you approached the end, the force of gravity would’ve decreased. Then you’d start to feel the effects of centrifugal force, which draws objects rotating in a circle (in this case, you rotating with Earth) away from the circle’s center (in this scenario, the planet’s core). This force would push you against the elevator’s ceiling. Once you reached the station, you’d enter a waiting spaceship and blast off into the cosmos.
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TRY ONLINE ONLI ON LINE NE FEBRUARY 15-22. natgeokids.com /giveaways
What would happen if you never stopped growing? You’d need a lot of custom-fitted clothing. Not including growth spurts (during which boys tend to grow more than girls), the average growth rate for kids is 2.5 inches a year until age 17 or so. That’s when genes— genetic codes that determine traits—signal the body to stop growing. On average a fully grown male is five feet nine inches tall, and a fully grown female is five feet four inches tall. If you grew until the age of, say, 80, you’d add another 13 feet or so to your height. That’d make you about as tall as a two-story house! NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
BY JULIE BEER AND MICHELLE HARRIS
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Rain forests are places of amazing diversity. Even though they cover less than two percent of Earth’s surface‚ they’re home to half of the planet’s animals and plants. See how rain forests measure up.
FORE The weig Goliath b ounces. T much as
groups of 10 to 30 birds‚ their loud squawks echoing through the canopy.
Rain-forest–dwelling green anacondas‚ the largest snakes in the world‚ can grow to more than 29 feet. Toucans use their 7.5-inch bills to snatch hard-to-reach fruit.
Only about 2 inches long‚ the red-eyed tree frog hides in the rain forest canopy and snags prey with its sticky tongue.
an area of rain forest the size of a football ﬁeld is cleared.
1 inIN 4 of the ingredients medicine are made from rain forest plants.
percent of the world’s freshwater is in the Amazon Basin.
JAMES WESTON / SHUTTERSTOCK (NUMBERED BACKGROUND); SKELOS / SHUTTERSTOCK (RAIN FOREST); LUCAS OLENIUK / TORONTO STAR / GETTY IMAGES (BUTTERFLY); FRANCISCO MARTINEZ-CLAVEL MARTINEZ / ALAMY (BEETLE)
HINGM S I N AST IES F F ST FILES THE
s s e n n i u G s d r o c e R World
GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS (BERTIE, YO-YO); CLEMENT MAHOUDEAU / IP / GETTY IMAGES (ZAPATA). INFORMATION PROVIDED BY © 2017 GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS LIMITED.
TORTOISE SPEED RACER!
You’ll cheer for this turbocharged tortoise! Bertie, a South African leopard tortoise, zips along at nearly a foot a second. That’s about twice as fast as the average tortoise. And by moving almost 18 feet in fewer than 20 seconds on a racetrack at his home in England, the reptile became the fastest known tortoise on Earth. “He does more of a power walk than a run,” owner Janine Calzini says. This is one tortoise that doesn’t need a hare for inspiration!
STER This toy’s definitely too big for the backyard. Beth Johnson’s Whoa-Yo is the world’s biggest wooden yo-yo. The towering toy is nearly 12 feet across and weighs 4,620 pounds—about the weight of three cows. You need a crane to lift, wind, and release the Whoa-Yo. Johnson’s storing the toy for now but eventually hopes to sell it. The buyer better have a humongous toy box.
BY JAMIE KIFFEL-ALCHEH
Talk about walking on air. Franky Zapata soared for 7,388 feet—almost a mile and a half—on his Flyboard Air hoverboard, snagging the record for the world’s farthest hoverboard flight. During the trip Zapata rose to a cruising altitude of almost a hundred feet, nearly the height of an average 10-story building. Says Zapata, “People say I look like Iron Man when I’m gliding through the air on the hoverboard!”
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
8 ways BY ERIN WHITMER
people try to get good luck around the world CARRYING
Watching a ladybug 3 fly into your
bat bones IN YOUR POCKET
Greece under- Italy 4
wear rabbit’s HOLDING A
on New Year’s Day
camel foot Peru in Turkey in
IN PARTS OF
Touching A CHIMNEY SWEEP’S BRUSH
HORSE FACING YOU IN
Bulgaria © JOSH WESTRICH / FUSE / GETTY IMAGES
THINGS TO DO IN
Climb 200 steps to the top of Windsor Castle’s Round Tower to admire views of the London skyline.
EDMUND SUMNER / VIEW PICTURES LTD / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO (BOTH)
COOL THINGS ABOUT ENGLAND Laws in England were written itt iin French for more than 400 years.
A traditional EEnglish li h dish di h called ll d toad-in-the-hole is made with sausages and pudding batter.
England is about the same size as Alabama.
BALANCING BARN N WHERE Suffolk, England HOW MUCH About $840 for four nights WHY IT’S COOL If you stay at this lodge, you’ll definitely be living on the edge. One half of the Balancing Barn sits on a hill; the other juts over the hillside, appearing to dangle inn midair! How does the building remain upright? The end sitting on land is anchored with concrete that’s strong enough to support the weight of the floating half. Covered in steel panels, thee hundred-foot-long hotel fits up to eight guests. A giant window built into the living-rooom floor on the dangling side of thhe building gives guests a view off the ground 26 feet below. Take thee stairs in the middle of the barrn and exit through a door in thee hillside to lounge underneath the lodge. You can even hop on the swing attached to the bottom of the structure’s floating side for a relaxing ride. You won’t find any farm animals inside the barn. But since you’re located next to a wildlife reserve, you might see an owl or a skylark passing under the window in the floor. Guess you’re not the only one who’ll want to spend time at this awesome hangout!
BY ROSE DAVIDSON
See the world’s largest collection of gnome and pixie figurines at the Gnome Reserve and Wild Flower Garden in the county of Devon.
Take a behind-the-scenes tour of Manchester’s Old Trafford and explore the stadium like a soccer player.
Beef up your wakeboarding skills at the Liverpool Wake Park, located along Liverpool’s waterfront dock complex.
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
someone get me a selfie stick.
SLICK PICS A KOALA EXAMINES A CAMERA RIGGED TO A TREE IN HIS ENCLOSURE AT THE T SYDNEY ZOO.
KOALAS SNAP “SELFIES”
Sydney, Australia Humans aren’t the only ones who love taking pictures of themselves. Turns out three koalas named Bruce, Aaron, and Bill do too! Sydney Zoo officials rigged the trees in the koala enclosure with cameras partially to entertain the animals—but also to capture images of them. A motion sensor let the cameras know when a koala was within range and triggered the camera to take photos. It’s kind of like the koalas are taking selfies! At first the koalas weren’t sure what to make of the cameras. They sniffed at the recording devices, then reached out with their paws to touch them. Enchanted, they hardly left the cameras all day, peering into the lenses while munching on eucalyptus leaves. “I’ve never seen the koalas so active!” senior zookeeper Caroline Monro says of the animals, which typically sleep more than 20 hours a day. Guess these koalas prefer prime time to nap time. —Sara Schwartz
“TIME FOR MY CLOSE-UP.”
“INSTAGRAM, HERE I COM E.”
“I WISH THE PAPARAZZI WOULD LEAF ME ALONE.”
cutest. brace face. ever.
DOG WEARS BRACES Spring Lake, Michigan Brace yourself—Wesley the golden retriever’s grin is a little bit different. That’s because he has, well, braces. As Wesley’s adult teeth began to grow in, the dog developed an underbite, meaning his bottom teeth stuck out in front of his top teeth. Wesley’s bite was so bad that he couldn’t close his mouth, making it difficult to eat. Good thing Molly Moore, Wesley’s owner, works at Harborfront Hospital for Animals, where her father, Jim Moore, is a veterinarian. He specializes in dentistry and decided braces were the best option for the pup. After the procedure, Wesley hardly seemed to notice the mouth metal, even during dinnertime. “Wesley loves to eat now,” his owner says. “It’s his favorite activity.” Best of all, because the braces are now off, the pup will get to show his pearly whites as the ring bearer in Molly Moore’s wedding. Now that’s something to smile about. —Allyson Shaw
make way for ducklings!
Dog SPRING LAKE, MICHIGAN
Ducklings CHARLOTTETOWN, CANADA
Koalas SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA
DUCKLINGS GET POLICE ESCORT
POLICE OFFICERS HELP LUCY THE DUCK AND HER . FAMILY CROSS THE STREET
Charlottetown, Canada Lucy is one lucky duck. Every spring she and her recently hatched ducklings get a police escort from a local garden center to a marshland across the street. For the past several years Lucy has laid her eggs among some potted plants at the same store. The store keeps Lucy safe by blocking off the area and putting up a sign asking customers to keep away.“She’s taken care of in there,” employee Heather Warren says.“I think that’s why she returns every year.” After her ducklings hatch, Lucy’s ready to get to the marsh. But first she needs to weave through a crowded parking lot and across a four-lane road. When store employees see that she’s on the move, they call the Charlottetown police department to help Lucy cross the busy lot and intersection. Police Chief Gary McGuigan says that motorists are fine with stopping to let the local celebrities waddle by.“Nobody minds taking a few minutes out of their day to let them pass,” he says.“People think it’s funny.” You could say that Lucy quacks them up. —Sara Schwartz
DAVID GRAY / REUTERS (KOALA, BIG PICTURE); TOBY ZERNA / NEWSPIX (KOALA INSETS, ALL); MOLLY MOORE (WESLEY); ALPTRAUM / DREAMSTIME (DUCKLING); HEATHER GINGER WARREN (LUCY AND DUCKLINGS)
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
Photographer Joel Sartore uses plain black or whitte backgrounds in is pictures. That’s cause he wants the ocus to be on the aanimals and n nothing else.
A photographer gives you a behind-the-scenes look at his quest to save animals. BY ALLYSON SHAW PHOTOGRAPHS BY JOEL SARTORE
JOEL SARTORE IS GRIPPED BY A FEISTY CLOUDED LEOPARD CUB.
YOU CAN HELP TOO! Go on n n to to get more info on Photo Ark and learn how you can make a difference.
Clouded leopards make a snorting noise when content.
Clouded leopard, native to Southeast Asia Columbus Zoo, Columbus, Ohio “My subject was a tiny two-pound clouded leopard cub. Caregivers were raising it because it was rejected by its mom. I was holding the cat in my arms when it suddenly scrambled onto my shoulder and climbed on my head! The cat hugged my noggin, its fur tickling my face. It was eventually removed by its keepers, but not before they got a picture of us. The little feline continued to act very silly during the photo shoot, playing and rolling around. It was a total goofball!”
COLUMBUS ZOO AND AQUARIUM (SARTORE WITH CLOUDED LEOPARD)
Joel Sartore has been pecked at by a bird, turned into a jungle gym by a clouded leopard, and slimed by a fish. And it’s all to protect animals. This National Geographic photographer is on a mission to snap pics of all 12,000 animal species living in zoos, aquariums, and other institutions worldwide. His project, called Photo Ark, aims to inspire others to protect these creatures.“I hope looking into the animals’ eyes will make people want to save them,” Sartore says. Since launching Photo Ark in 2006, Sartore has photographed everything from large mammals to tiny insects.“All animals deserve to be recognized,” he says. Sartore works with keepers to make sure the animals stay safe. And though he’s photographing captive animals, he’s had some pretty wild encounters. Sartore tells Nat Geo Kids about his most memorable moments.
Brown-throated sloths can rotate their heads up to 270 degrees.
Brown-throated sloth, native to Central and South America Pan American Conservation Association, Panama City, Panama “I was at a rescue center in Panama photographing a wild sloth that was recovering after it had been found injured in the rain forest. Sloths are usually quite stationary—they can hang motionless from tree branches for hours. So I expected the animal to stay totally still during the shoot. But when the sloth’s caretaker set it down, it suddenly started to inch toward me. It came right up to me and lifted its head. Sloths have a smilelike expression. I can’t say what this animal was thinking, but it looked as if it were grinning at me.”
Nesting female hornbills hide in tree hollows, sealing the entrances with droppings, mud, and regurgitated food.
White-crowned hornbill, native to Southeast Asia St. Augustine Alligator Farm, St. Augustine, Florida “Raja the hornbill had a long, sharp beak, and he wasn’t afraid to use it. In order to take the bird’s picture without him flying off, we put him in a small, cube-shaped tent. No matter where I was standing, Raja tried to peck at me through the tent walls! When I stuck my camera through the tent’s opening, the bird began jabbing at the lens. I told Raja to be careful—the camera cost $6,000. But he didn’t seem to care.”
Gulf hagfish, native to Gulf of Mexico Gulf Specimen Marine Lab, Panacea, Florida “Hagfish are fish that have a sticky trick: They ooze clear slime through pores in their skin to fend off predators or defend territory. The hagfish I visited at this lab wasn’t too happy that I was on its turf. As the caretaker and I placed it in a tank to be photographed, it slimed us! Goo got all over our hands and Hagﬁsh can the tank walls. You could barely see the fish in the twist their water. But after cleaning the tank, I finally got a bodies into slime-free shot of the fish.” knots. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
Asian elephants ﬂap their ears more as the air temperature warms.
Asian elephant, native to tropical forests in Asia Buffalo Zoo, Buffalo, New York “This elephant was easy to photograph—he kept posing! He was motivated by food to bust out his modeling moves. When we got him in front of the camera, he bent his trunk back so it was touching his forehead and remained in that position. We took the picture and ‘paid’ him with a grapefruit. He gobbled up the treat and struck another pose! We rewarded him with an orange, and then he posed again. We fed him apples, carrots, all kinds of things, and he was more than happy to show off for us.”
By the Numbers Species photographed:
(about halfway there!) Institutions visited:
300 Miles traveled:
500,000 Countries visited:
over 30 Time spent so far:
10 years (over 30,000 hours!) Cameras used:
up to 15 16
Baby chimpanzees have a tuft of white hair on their rumps.
Photo Ark spotlights all kinds of animals. Meet some of Joel Sartore’s strangest subjects.
Over 3,000 species of nudibranchs exist.
Regal goddess nudibranch, native to tropical waters worldwide Gulf Specimen Marine Lab, Panacea, Florida “‘I can’t believe these animals exist!’ That’s the thought I had when I saw a type of sea slug called a nudibranch at this lab. Both odd and beautiful, nudibranchs come in a rainbow of colors from deep blue to neon pink. And they move like ribbons flowing through water. As I photographed them, I felt as if I were taking pictures of aliens from another planet. But I’m glad you can find these guys right here on Earth.”
Chimpanzee, native to central Africa Tampa Zoo, Tampa, Florida “Zookeepers were raising this little chimp because his mother wasn’t able to. The baby ape wanted people to hold him constantly and fussed when anyone tried to set him down. The only way we could do the shoot was if someone held him while that person crouched below the camera, grasping him from the waist down and rubbing his tummy so he felt safe. Eventually the chimp started to feel more confident. He flexed his arm, made funny faces, and even reached out to touch the camera. He was one of the sweetest animals I’ve photographed.”
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SOUTHERN TAMANDUA Native to South America Lowry Park Zoo, Tampa, Florida
HAWK-HEADED PARROT Native to South America Houston Zoo, Houston, Texas
BLACK AND RUFOUS ELEPHANT SHREW Native to East Africa Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium, Omaha, Nebraska
PROBOSCIS MONKEY Native to the Asian island of Borneo Singapore Zoo, Singapore
MISSION ANIMAL RESCUE on saving species. natgeokids.com /mission-animal-rescue
GIANT SNAKE-NECKED TURTLE Native to Australia Tennessee Aquarium, Chattanooga, Tennessee
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
PLANET NINE IS A NEPTUNE-SIZE WORLD HIDDEN IN OUR SOLAR SYSTEM?
BY STEPHANIE WARREN DRIMMER ART BY MONDOLITHIC
GET MORE! natgeokids.com/space
ay out in the farthest reaches of the solar system, a mysterious undiscovered planet orbits through space. It’s gigantic—almost four times the size of Eartth. And it’s so far away that it takes up too 20,000 years to orbit the sun. Thhis planet isn’t science ﬁction. Astrronomers think it really exists. Theyy’ve dubbed it Planet Nine, and theyy’re searching the skies to ﬁnd it.
FAR OUT Whenn most people think of our solar systeem, they think of its eight planets and our sun. But not astronomer Mike Brow wn. Brown is interested in the region of sppace beyond these eight planets. “Theere’s this huge part of the solar systeem that we’re only just beginning to learnn about,” he says. Beeyond Neptune is an area known as the K Kuiper(KY-pur) belt, which scientists usedd to think was empty. But it turns out tthe Kuiper belt is home to icy, rocky objects; billions of comets; and a few dwarrf planets(objects too small to be conssidered planets) such as Pluto.
the planet would be roughly the size of Neptune. Like Neptune, it would likely be made of gas, and the temperature there would be a frigid minus 374.8°F. “It’s hard to believe that we could miss something as big as Neptune!” Brown says. But the planet is really far away, about 56 billion miles from Earth. Only a little light would hit it. If it exists, only two telescopes in the world are powerful enough to search vast areas of the sky for it efﬁciently—and until now, they haven’t been looking for the planet.
While observing the belt in 2014, Brown and his research partner, Konstantin Batygin, saw something strange: The orbits of many of the smaller objects in the Kuiper belt were aligned. Weirder still, they never came closer to the sun than Neptune. It was like something was pulling them away. But what?
S T R A N G E S PAC E Brown and Batygin spent over a year trying to ﬁgure out the objects’ odd behavior. They discussed several potential answers—but only one seemed to work. “We were convinced another planet was out there,” Brown says. To ﬁnd out if they were right, the pair created a computer model illustrating the objects. Then they plugged an imaginary planet into the model. The model showed that the planet’s gravity would pull on these icy objects, making them move in exactly the way they had moved in space. The model also gave the scientists an idea of the planet’s size. Because of its strong gravitational pull, Brown and Batygin inferred that
THE HUNT IS ON Brown and Batygin are convinced that their evidence proves that Planet Nine is hidden somewhere beyond the Kuiper belt. But Brown predicts the search will take at least a few years. Soon future telescopes will let us peer even farther into space. And when we do, Brown thinks we may discover that Planet Nine isn’t the only thing out there. “Planet Nine is the planet for my generation,” he says. “But Planet 10? That’s what tomorrow’s astronomers— kids growing up today—will look for.”
OUR NEW SOLAR SYSTEM? Scientists aren’t sure of Planet Nine’s exact location, but they S think it might lurk in the outer edges of our solar system, somewhere beyond Neptune.
MARS EARTH VENUS MERCURY SUN
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
N NAT VETERINARY TECHNICIA SMITH HELPS PREPARE THEION. RAT OPE RACCOON FOR HER
BY SCOTT ELDER disoriented ﬁve-month-old raccoon scurries across a busy road in Greenbrae, California. Somehow the animal and her mom have become separated, and now the frightened baby has no idea what to do. Suddenly a car approaches. Unable to see the animal, the driver accidentally runs over her hind leg. The raccoon falls to the ground where she lies helpless and limp.
OPERATOR ASSISTANCE Other motorists, who saw the accident, pull over to check on the injured animal. One concerned witness is Marco Berger, who works for a nearby wildlife hospital called WildCare. “The raccoon is not only wounded—she’s in total shock,” Berger says. “She needs immediate help.”
feet d raccoon gets back on her mans. he help of kindhearted hu Berger calls a nearby branch of LEG WORK the Marin Humane Society, an orga- Almost immediately after wa nization that, among other things, from the surgery, the raccoon shows o transports injured wildlife to care signs of improvement. “Withi a centers. About 10 minutes later, she’s able to walk on her leg,” rescue ofﬁcers arrive on the scene. says. A week and a half later, t They use a net to scoop up the lithas become so active that Wil tle raccoon, then load her into an staff decide to move the ani animal ambulance and rush her to 12-foot-by-12-foot outdoor e WildCare. with trees for her to scale. “T At the hospital, head veterinary coon loves climbing,” Smith s technician Nat Smith sedates the “And she doesn’t slip or raccoon and gives her a checkup. fall at any time.” An x-ray of the kit’s leg reveals The raccoon’s leg Raaccoons have that the femur, or thighbone, is continues to heal. nerves in their hands that act completely broken. If the bone Although her bone aalmost like isn’t repaired, she’ll never be able will eventually grow ttaste buds. to run, climb, or forage for food in the back together, staff at wild. “She needs each one of her legs to WildCare plan on leavwork in order to survive,” Smith says. ing the plate in her thigh. The good news is that the leg can be “It’s not at all uncomfortable,” Smith ﬁxed with surgery. says. “And keeping it there willl ensure METAL PLATE Smith contacts veterithat her leg stays in nary surgeon James Farese, good shape.” The T racwho instantly agrees to do coon builds strength by the procedure. Three days scampering arround her later, Farese arrives at enclosure. She’s also fed a WildCare. After giving the diet of fruits, innsects, and raccoon sleeping medimice—the same foods cine, he makes an incision that she’d eat inn the wild. in her leg. Then he careWithin two m h , fully pushes the muscles young raccoon i out of the way, realigns be released. Afterr one ﬁnal AN X-RAY the broken bone, and checkup, she’s loaded into a SURGERY TAKEN AFTER T PLATE IN SHOWS THE STE HE drills a narrow steel pet carrier and driven to a EL THE RAC COON’S LE G. plate to both ends of forested area near where she the femur with tiny screws was found. Once the carrier to keep the bone in place. Once that’s door is opened, the raccoon done, Farese closes up the leg incision patters off on her four legs into the with stitches. Now the staff must wait to woods. Says Smith, “She’s ready to take see how the raccoon recovers. on the wild.” KATE LYNCH / WILDCARE PHOTO (SURGERY); WILDCARE PHOTO (X-RAY); JADIMAGES / SHUTTERSTOCK (MAIN IMAGE)
A raccoon might use up to 20 den sites at a time.
These animals can run at speeds of up to 15 miles an hour.
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Raccoons are excellent swimmers.
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
3 A sperm whale produces vocalizations through its nose rather than its mouth.
KIDS CAN HEAR SOME HIGH-PITCHED NOISES THAT ADULTS CAN’T.
IN TRADITIONAL JAPANESE CULTURE, THE SOUND OF BELLS IS THOUGHT TO WARD OFF UNKIND SPIRITS.
An inventor has formulated a coating for submarines that allows them to avoid sonar detection.
The sound of your laugh changes depending on whether you’re chuckling with pals or strangers.
The sound of ocean waves crashing comes mostly from bubbles. The human ear has 25,000 nerve cells that help with hearing.
THUNDER, WHICH IS CAUSED BY LIGHTNING, S CAN SOUND DIFFERENT DEPENDING ON THE SHAPE OF THE LIGHTNING BOLT.
BY ANDREA SILEN
Diplodocus had a 20-foot-long tail that created a booming noise when the dinosaur snapped it.
TO ATTRACT MATES, MALE CRACKER BUTTERFLIES CREATE CRACKLING NOISES BY CLAPPING THEIR WINGS TOGETHER.
IN SOUTH KOREA, PEOPLE IMITATE A DOG’S BARK BY SAYING “MEONG, MEONG” INSTEAD OF “WOOF, WOOF.”
In 2015 a choir released a song that lasted for 3 hours, 1 minute, and 50 seconds.
The longest echo, recorded in an empty oil storage tank in Scotland, lasted for 75 seconds.
THE AMERICAN GOLDFINCH SOMETIMES SOUNDS AS IF IT’S SAYING “POTATO CHIP” WHEN IT WARBLES.
ONE-THIRD OF THE SOUND MADE BY A 75-PIECE ORCHESTRA COMES FROM THE BASS DRUM.
CERTAIN PLANTS MAY GROW FASTER IF MUSIC IS PLAYED FOR THEM.
GHADEL / DREAMSTIME (1); NED FRISK / GETTY IMAGES (2); NORBERT WU / MINDEN PICTURES (3); THOMAS MARENT / MINDEN PICTURES (7); DLILLC / CORBIS / VCG / GETTY IMAGES (8); DEA PICTURE LIBRARY / GETTY IMAGES (9); TED KINSMAN / SCIENCE SOURCE (10); LONGJOURNEYS / SHUTTERSTOCK (11); LINDA FRESHWATERS ARNDT / GETTY IMAGES (12); PRUDKOV / SHUTTERSTOCK (13); BEACHBOYX10 / DREAMSTIME (15); DIGITALSTOCK (16)
17 SCIENTISTS HAVE RECORDED STRANGE HISSING SOUNDS 22 MILES ABOVE EARTH’S SURFACE.
18 The chirp of
Australia’s greengrocer cicada is louder than a hand drill. 20 0
In the 18th century, ﬁreﬁghters gave orders over brass “speaking trumpets,” an early version of the megaphone.. 22
21 HUMANS USE OVER A HUNDRED MUSCLES TO SPEAK JUST ONE PHRASE.
SOUND TRAVELS MORE QUICKLY THROUGH WARM AIR THAN COLD AIR.
The buzz of Kylo Ren’s lightsaber in Star Wars: The Force Awakens was partly inspired by the sound of a chainsaw.
IN ONE CHAMBER IN THE U.S. CAPITOL, WHISPERS SPOKEN IN CERTAIN SPOTS CAN BE CLEARLY HEARD SEVERAL FEET AWAY.
The MOVEMENT T OF WATER in the CARIBBEAN SEA makes a aW WHISTLING L NOISE that can be DETECTED FROM SPACE.
Made with steel pipes, a sculpture in Lancashire, England, called the Singing Ringing Tree hums when wind blows through its tubes.
27 The d desert rain frog’s croak sounds like a squeaky toy.
Known as the world’s quietest place, a room in one Minnesota lab has walls that absorb
99.9 percent of sound.
Elephant seals hear better underwater than on land.
Scientists are studying whether METEORS make CRACKLING SOUNDS AS THEY MOVE.
MECHANIK / SHUTTERSTOCK (17); GIANPIERO FERRARI / FLPA / MINDEN PICTURES (18); SYLVAIN CORDIER / BIOSPHOTO (19); EYEWAVE / DREAMSTIME (20); KEN COLE / DREAMSTIME (22); ARTRAM / SHUTTERSTOCK (SOUND WAVE); ESB PROFESSIONAL / SHUTTERSTOCK (24); BRENDA KEAN / ALAMY (25); C&S DORSE / BIODIVERSITY FOCUSED (27); ISTOCK / GETTY IMAGES PLUS (29); THOMAS HEATON (30)
RESIDENTS OF LA GOMERA, AN ISLAND OFF NORTHWEST AFRICA, SOMETIMES COMMUNICATE WITH A LANGUAGE MADE UP ENTIRELY OF WHISTLES.
SOUND PLAYLIST natgeokids.com/march
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
A J NIN These animals can eat over 75 pounds of food a day(mostly leaves).
S New research suggests that there are four species of giraffes.
A giraffeâ€™s heart weighs upp to 25 poounds.
A giraffe needs to drink water only once every couple of days.
These animals have some seriously stealthy moves. BY DAVID BROWN You might not think that giraffes would have much in common with ninja, skilled combatants who prowled through 15th-century Japan on spy missions. After all, giraffes move awkwardly, and their superlong necks hardly seem stealthy. But these hoofed creatures are surprisingly sneaky and agile. Discover how giraffes kick it up a notch, ninja style.
A F R I C A
Where giraffes live
In the 1400s, Japan was divided into kingdoms ruled by b lleaders d called ll d daimyo(DY-mee-oh). The daimyo fought each other for control of land and wealth. Ninja were the daimyoâ€™s secret agents, whose job was to gain information on the enemy.
JOE AUSTIN / NIS / MINDEN PICTURES (FOUR GIRAFFES); RICHARD DU TOIT / GETTY IMAGES (GIRAFFE PEEKING HEAD OUT); CURTIS JOHNSON / GETTY IMAGES (NINJA); MITSUAKI IWAGO / MINDEN PICTURES (RUNNING); RICHARD DU TOIT / MINDEN PICTURES (BLENDING WITH TREE, EAR STICKING OUT); JEAN-FRANÇOIS DUCASSE / GETTY IMAGES (TONGUE); WILL BURRARD-LUCAS / NPL / MINDEN PICTURES (KICKING); MARTIN WALZ (MAP); JAMES YAMASAKI (GIRAFFE ILLUSTRATIONS)
The Nepeeded for S Ninja trained to become swift runners so they could easily slip away from foes during a chase. Giraffes are also excellent sprinters using their long, muscular legs. At a full gallop, these animals can reach 35 miles an hour, which helps them evade predators such as lions. But giraffes don’t have to go through extensive speed training like ninja did. Babies have been spotted running alongside their mothers just 10 hours after they were born!
Giraffe nasts Gym Ninja were renowned for their acrobatic combat moves as well as their ability to contort their bodies to fit into small hiding spots. A giraffe’s tongue also has ninja-like flexibility. It’s as long as the arms of some adult humans and strong enough to grip objects. It can pluck leaves one by one from a branch of an acacia tree while avoiding sharp thorns. Giraffes can even bend their long tongues backward to clean their ears! Ninja probably couldn’t do that, no matter how hard they trained.
Often hired by rulers who were competing for power, ninja would dress up as farmers or merchants to sneak into enemy fortresses and spy on their leader’s opponent. Giraffes don’t exactly seem like they’d be masters of disguise because of their distinctive appearance. But these animals sport the perfect camouflage for living on the African savanna. Their brown spots look like the shadows created by sunlight shining through trees. This allows them to blend in with their surroundings and hidee from predators.
Weapotne Mas ! KA-POW
When ninja came faceto-face with their rivals, they could use their skill with we s ch as swords and daggers to defeat the enemy. Giraffes have their own built-in weapons: hoooves with sharp edges. In fact a giraffe can be deadly when it uses its feet to kick other giraffes and predators. Two male giraffes might also fight for dominnance by clubbing each other with their hheavy heads and necks. Young males even playfully knock heads and necks against one another in mock duels to practice brawling.
People once believed that ninja had sharper senses than the average human. According to legend, they could see in the dark and hear tiny movements from far y. This likely wasn’t true for a, but giraffes really do have uperb vision and hearing. Using their keen eyesight, they can spot a moving animal over a halfmile away. They also hear noises that humans can’t detect. Could giraffes be even better warriors than ninja? Makes sense!
Viki Archaeologists uncover a possible
BY KRISTIN BAIRD RATTINI ART BY SAM KENNEDY
wooden ship heaves onto shore after crossing the Atlantic Ocean to this remote spot. The explorers aboard hope to establish a settlement here, in what is now Newfoundland, an island in eastern Canada. They’ll build homes and repair ships—perhaps preparing for more voyages farther into this unknown land. So who are these mysterious travelers? They are Vikings. No proof has been found of Viking settlements in North America beyond this spot—called L’Anse aux Meadows. But modern technology has uncovered clues at a possible new site that could rewrite Viking history.
SCANDINAVIA IS THIS WAY.
PATH OF TH Experts think the Vikin followed this route fro Scandinavia (modernday Denmark, Sweden, and Norway) through t North Atlantic to settle Newfoundland, Canada.
ATLANTIC OCEAN ewfoundland
GREG MUMFORD (PARCAK DIGGING)
SARAH PARCAK (RIGHT) AND OTHERS DIG FOR VIKING ARTIFACTS AT POINT ROSEE.
SETTING SAIL The word “Viking” means “pirate” in their Old Norse language, and they lived up to the name. They were ﬁerce raiders who lived between A.D. 750 and A.D. 1050, attacking lands outside their native Scandinavia (modern-day Denmark, Sweden, and Norway). Their expeditions were chronicled in stories called the Norse sagas. The sagas tell of Vikings sailing west, likely toward Newfoundland. “Newfoundland has always been a focus in the search for Norse settlements,” Viking expert Neil Price says. “It’s one of the closest points to Greenland, where Vikings were known to trade.” In 1960 archaeologists followed descriptions in the sagas to Newfoundland’s L’Anse aux Meadows. There they unearthed several artifacts, including foundations of longhouses, a type of building found in European Viking settlements. This made L’Anse aux Meadows the ﬁrst conﬁrmed Viking site in North America.
EYE IN THE SKY Archaeologist Sarah Parcak became interested in the search for North American Viking sites
after the 1960 discovery. “If the sagas are true, then there must be other sites,” Parcak says. “But where are they?” Parcak, who refers to herself as a space archaeologist, uses cutting-edge science to look for buried treasures by studying satellite photos taken from space. That distance allows her to see things that aren’t visible from a plane or on the ground. “For instance, I look for small changes in plants in a particular area,” she says. Those changes sometimes indicate that something man-made is buried below—or once stood in that spot. After studying the Canadian coastline, Parcak zeroed in on Point Rosee, some 400 miles south of L’Anse aux Meadows. There she saw shapes in the landscape that were darker than the surrounding grass. One patch matched the dimensions of the longhouses on L’Anse aux Meadows. It was time for a closer look.
IRON MEN At Point Rosee, Parcak’s team conducted a magnetic scan, or an x-ray of the ground. It showed high iron levels. Turns out that Vikings
used iron to make their tools. Parcak’s team has done some digging, but they’re still waiting on test results to verify what they’ve uncovered. One thing they haven’t found is any ﬂint or pottery, which the Vikings did not use. Those items would’ve instead connected the site to Native American tribes or other European settlers.
NEW TERRITORY If Parcak’s work conﬁrms that Point Rosee was a Viking settlement, it helps ﬁll in the map of where these explorers staked their claims. “A settlement there would suggest the Vikings explored more of North America,” Price says. “It might have served as a rest stop for trips farther south and west.” Parcak is still at Point Rosee, searching for clues. She doesn’t know for sure if she’s walking in the footsteps of the Vikings. But her discovery is every bit as exciting as the Norse sagas that may have taken place there nearly a thousand years ago. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
his luck and can’t ﬁnd A leprechaun is down on get through the magical him the pot of gold. Help s n ﬁnd 10 lucky shamrock forest to his for tune. The pot 0f gold, the ch rea To T: HIN ze. hidden in the ma and bridges, climbing you can try crossing logs ing a boat ride. ladders and ropes, or tak ANSWER ON PAGE 35
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These photos show close-up views of animal noses. Unscramble the letters to identify what’s in each picture. Bonus: Use the highlighted letters to solve the puzzle below.
TOP ROW (LEFT TO RIGHT): EDWIN GIESBERS / GETTY IMAGES; MIKHAIL KOLESNIKOV / SHUTTERSTOCK; LARS CHRISTENSEN / DREAMSTIME. MIDDLE ROW (LEFT TO RIGHT): ERIC ISSELEE / SHUTTERSTOCK; LLOYD LUECKE / DREAMSTIME; PLTPHOTOGRAPHY / DREAMSTIME. BOTTOM ROW (LEFT TO RIGHT): PANORAMIC IMAGES / GETTY IMAGES; MARTIN HARVEY / GETTY IMAGES; BRADLEY DYMOND / ALAMY STOCK PHOTO.
ANSWERS ON PAGE 35
SNAIA N E P L AT E H
NSOOIP TRDA ORFG
HINT: What does a nose say to be polite?
Z Y U —————— ——— ————— ———
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
ss Disaster Cla BY MARGARET J. KRAUSS
Ask a friend to give you words to ﬁll in the blanks in this story without showing it to him or her. Then read out loud for a laugh.
My class had been waiting for going to learn how to one gram of
around me turned type of furniture
. “First dissolve
the mixture,” said my
. Before I ﬁnished, he was already giving more instructions. To keep up,
a pinch of
in one liter of water. Then
type of pet
type of fruit, plural
months to do a fun chemistry experiment. Today we were
and threw it into a cup of
adverb ending in -ly noun, plural
the room, covering everyone in
for two minutes,” he said. Trying to hurry, I added a few
and smelled like
as the mixture began to adjective
past-tense verb something gross
it three times. Suddenly the air . My lab partner dived under the
. Then the experiment
goo. I guess that wasn’t quite the reaction I was looking for.
S L A M I N A N E D D I H e Find th D IN ANIMALS OFTEN BLsEN for protec-
BRANDON COLE (A); KEVIN SCHAFER / GETTY IMAGES (B); ANDY MANN / GETTY IMAGES (C); CHRIS MATTISON / FLPA / MINDEN PICTURES (D); DAVID FLEETHAM / NATURE PICTURE LIBRARY (E); THOMAS MARENT / MINDEN PICTURES (F)
with their environment ed below tion. Find the animals list the letter ite Wr hs. rap tog pho in the to each t nex to pho t of the correc ON PAGE 35 S WER ANS animalâ€™s name. 1. walking leaf insect 2. flounder 3. walruses 4. island fox 5. cowrie* 6. leaf-tailed gecko il. *HINT: A cowrie is a sea sna
F NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
t u O h g u a L Loud “oh, good … My favorite TV SHOW is on!”
CHRIS WARE (ALL)
“it can spot a leopard seal a mile away!”
“where's the fire? i clocked you going over TWO miles a day!”
“i quit storing mine in trees years ago.”
BILL BACHMAN / ALAMY (1); GONEWITHTHEWIND / ALAMY, IMAGE DIGITALLY COMPOSED (2); ROOM THE AGENCY / ALAMY (3); RAINER GROSSKOPF / GETTY IMAGES (4); DAVID WATMOUGH / DREAMSTIME (5); MIKHAIL OLYKAYNEN / ALAMY (6); IGOR STEVANOVIC / ALAMY, IMAGE DIGITALLY COMPOSED (7)
Seeing isn’t always believing. Two of these funny signs are not real. Can you ﬁgure out which two are fake?
ANSWERS ON PAGE 35
2 3 4
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS
What do YOU think this dog is thinking?
re No mo g in s hor d! aroun
1. Fill in the thought balloon. 2. Cut out the entire picture (or make a photocopy of it). 3. Mail it along with your name, address, phone number, and date of
birth to Nat Geo Kids, Back Talk, P.O. Box 96000, Washington, DC 20090-6000. Selection for publication in a future issue will be at the discretion of Nat Geo Kids.
Feeling funny? Go online to play more “Back Talk.” ngkidsmyshot.com
Dude, what happened to your beak?
I thought the invitation said “formal”!
Meghan T., 10 Cedar Springs, Michigan
Evie M., 13 Albuquerque, New Mexico
Um … I think you have the wrong address.
Where’s the sardine pizza we ordered?
Marina C., 11 Lowell, Massachusetts
Makayla S., 8 Hooppole, Illinois
So that’s where all our ﬁsh went!
I’ve never seen this kind of penguin before.
Nate B., 13 McKinleyville, California
Isaac O., 11 Chandler, Arizona
Would you like to join us on our daily belly slide?
Oops, you blinked! I won the staring contest!
Owen G., 11 Herndon, Virginia
Riley M., 10 Apache, Oklahoma
JOHN DRYSDALE (DOG LEADING HORSE);MARTHA HOLMES / NATURE PICTURE LIBRARY (PENGUINS)
From the February 2016 Issue
ts mode green and used spor “I dyed some water speed. Then I just turned ter to get the fast shut —EverythingDawg wn!” do e sid up re the pictu
“What in the World?” (page 29): Top row: tiger, Asian elephant, dog. Middle row: mandrill, sea lion, two-toed sloth. Bottom row: caiman, poison dart frog, sika deer. Bonus: sneeze and thank you “Find the Hidden Animals” (page 31): 1. F, 2. E, 3. C, 4. B, 5. A, 6. D. “Signs of the Times” (page 33): Signs 2 and 7 are fake.
ese Check out th ore at m d an os phot t.com. ngkidsmysho d photos BONUS: Uploa g them of bugs and ta out to with #bugged! earn a badge
“Lucky Break” (page 28):
Happy St. P atrick’s Da y
A Touch of Color pMu
d and waving a slow shutter spee in ing us by s il ail tr ht lig Make a glow stick.
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