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Pets Theme Unit
Life with Creepy, Crawly Pets



Life with Creepy, Crawly Pets
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.72

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    millipede, millipedes, orange-red, outrageous, temperament, moderate, courageous, tarantula, eaters, nocturnal, species, unique, adventurous, segment, especially, interesting
     content words:    Jack Hannah, Peruvian Pinktoe, Mexican Redleg, Ecuadorian Purple


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Life with Creepy, Crawly Pets
By Colleen Messina
  

1     Most people do not like cockroaches, spiders, and centipedes very much. But believe it or not, some people keep them as pets. These creepy, crawly creatures can make interesting pets if you know what to do...and how to keep them where you want them. Not all bugs are as friendly as tiny but bold Flik from A Bug's Life.
 
2     If you are one of those rare people who might like a bug as a pet, you have many to choose from. There are over 30,000 kinds of spiders, 3,500 species of cockroaches, and 250,000 species of beetles. Many of these creatures spend a lot of time in people's homes, but not as pets. Many people just think of them as pests, especially cockroaches.
 
3     Cockroaches are strange pets, but if you want one, you should be sure that you follow the rules. Many states require a permit from the Department of Agriculture to keep cockroaches as pets. Teachers, researchers, and scientists keep cockroaches for their classrooms or experiments. Cockroaches need a house with a tight-fitting mesh lid that allows air to enter it. Cockroaches are not picky eaters. They will eat almost anything, and if they don't get enough food, they will even eat their cage...or each other. Jack Hannah, the animal expert, says that he always brings a couple of cockroaches in his pocket when he travels. He calls them his buddies.

Paragraphs 4 to 7:
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