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Secretary Birds



Secretary Birds
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 6 to 8
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   7.63

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    standing, dealing, crane-like, quill-like, savannahs, theory, secretary, superior, among, possibly, fierce, however, such, include, throughout, base
     content words:    United States, South Africa


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Secretary Birds   

1     In the world of birds, there is one group that is most famous for their superior hunting skills. We call them birds of prey or raptors. For a bird to be categorized as such, it must have excellent eyesight, muscular legs, sharp claws, and hooked beaks. Can you think of a bird of prey? Sure, the national bird of the United States - the bald eagle - is one excellent example! Other familiar birds of prey include hawks, vultures, and falcons.
 
2     Among these fierce predators, secretary birds are the only birds of prey that have a pair of crane-like long legs. We can find secretary birds throughout African savannahs. Standing more than 3 feet tall, secretary birds are most recognizable by their long, black head crests of feathers. In fact, these feathers are possibly how secretary birds got their name. Back in the 19th century, British law secretaries often carried their quill pens in their wigs. The resemblance of the bird's head crests to a secretary's quill pens is one popular theory of why we called the animal the secretary bird.

Paragraphs 3 to 4:
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