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Endangered Animals Theme Unit
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Aye-ayes



Aye-ayes
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   7.69

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    aspect, aye-ayes, confirmation, food-bearing, hairless, hence, oddest-looking, opening, pale-colored, encounter, species, lies, perhaps, bony, section, chisel


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Aye-ayes   

1     Aye-ayes are perhaps the oddest-looking members of the primate family. Like foxes, aye-ayes have long, bushy tails. Like rodents, aye-ayes have four special incisor teeth that never stop growing. Like bats, aye-ayes have large, hairless ears and a keen sense of hearing. Nevertheless, the strangest aspect of aye-ayes bears no resemblance to any other animal. So, what is this special physical feature that we can only see on aye-ayes? The answer lies in their hands.
 
2     Aye-ayes have a very long, bony middle finger on each hand. When aye-ayes are hungry, they use their middle fingers to tap on tree branches or trunks. As they do so, aye-ayes listen intently for hollow sounds. Once they discover a cavity, they continue tapping on it to determine if insect larvae live there. If insects are found, aye-ayes chisel a hole in the wood with their incisors. Then, they insert their middle fingers into the small opening and scoop out the larvae. Indeed, aye-ayes' hunting method is very similar to that used by woodpeckers. So, we might say that aye-ayes are the primate version of woodpeckers! Aside from eating insect larvae, aye-ayes also like to feed on coconuts, mangoes, and fungi.

Paragraphs 3 to 4:
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Animal Themes
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Endangered Animals Theme Unit
             Endangered Animals Theme Unit


Mammals
             Mammals


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