Cover image for Leaf litter critters / written by Leslie Bulion ; illustrated by Robert Meganck.
Leaf litter critters / written by Leslie Bulion ; illustrated by Robert Meganck.
1st ed.
Publication Information:
Atlanta : Peachtree, 2018.

Physical Description:
55 pages: colour illustrations ; 22 cm
Litter critters -- Bacteria criteria -- The mighty mushroom is a fun guy -- Three protists -- The rotifer -- Watch out for bears -- nematodes -- Glue peg? Please! I'm a springtail! -- Two mites -- Proturans and diplurans -- Scavenger symphylan -- Night duty -- Not much muscle -- Our friend, the earthworm -- In defense of millipedes -- The pseudoscorpion life -- Centipede attack -- Rove beetle -- A few favorite brown food web kings.
Audience/Reading Level:
Interest age level: 8-12.

Interest grade level: 4-6.
Added Author:


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
577.3 BUL Book Junior Collection

On Order



Have fun on this poetic tour through the leaf litter layer and dig into the fascinating facts about the tiny critters who live there.
Nineteen poems in a variety of verse forms with accompanying science notes take readers on a decomposer safari through the "brown food web," from bacteria through tardigrades and on to rove beetle predators with other busy recyclers in-between. Glossary, hands-on investigations, and resources are included in the back matter.

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

"Between soil's grains of weathered rock,/ Beneath its veiny leaves in scraps,/ Amid its ribs of rotting sticks,/ Soil's litter critters find the gaps," begins Bulion's 19-poem exploration of tiny and sometimes microscopic creatures that rarely find themselves the subject of a poem. Among them are comma-size proturans ("We eat debris/ from forest floors,/ like rotting plants/ and fungus spores") and eyelash-length symphylans, fast-moving, omnivorous mini-centipedes that devour everything from "tender rootlets" to "newish dead of any breed,/ Since I'm no fusspot when I feed." Bulion stuffs her poems with scientific detail and puts even more into accompanying "science notes." Meganck's cartoons strike sillier notes (a rat races away from a millipede's stench), balancing all of the information Bulion provides with hefty doses of fun. Ages 8-12. Illustrator's agent: Abigail Samoun, Red Fox Literary. (Mar.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.