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New board book highlights plight of little brown bats

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YARMOUTH - Islandport Press will release the board book 'A Little Brown Bat Story' this fall, the second in a series of four books being developed in partnership with Maine Audubon. The book will be launched on Oct. 3, at the 28th annual Apple Day at Maine Audubon's Gilsland Farm headquarters in Falmouth.

'A Little Brown Bat Story' is written by children's book author and editor Melissa Kim and illustrated by Maine artist Jada Fitch. The second book in the 'Wildlife on the Move' series, it tells the story of one bat who must find a safe place to spend the winter and avoid the fungus that is endangering little brown bats throughout the United States and Canada. The book follows the popular 'A Snowy Owl Story,' the first book in the series, which was released in February.

The goal of the series is to bring well-written, engaging stories about wildlife migration, conservation and respectful human interaction with nature to a Pre-K through second grade audience. Islandport is working with naturalists at Maine Audubon to produce a scientifically accurate, narrative nonfiction story that is also gorgeously illustrated and designed to appeal to a young audience.

The books are sold through typical retail channels (as well as at Maine Audubon's Nature Stores), and Maine Audubon will use the book as a cornerstone of its education efforts for its preschool outreach and school collaborations in Maine. Ten percent of earnings from book sales will be used to support Maine Audubon educational outreach programs that benefit underserved preschools statewide. Islandport Press and Maine Audubon plan to release four books in the series; the third book, about the endangered Blanding's turtle, is scheduled for release in spring 2016.

Melissa Kim, the author of seven children's books, one adult guidebook and countless articles for children's magazines, is a former editor of Habitat, the magazine of Maine Audubon, and is currently the children's book editor at Islandport Press. Jada Fitch is a freelance illustrator from Portland. The illustrator of 'A Snowy Owl Story,' she is also the author and illustrator of 'Tea with Hazel.'

Islandport Press is a dynamic, award-winning publisher dedicated to stories rooted in the essence and sensibilities of New England. For more information about the company, visit www.islandportpress.com, call (207) 846-3344 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Maine Audubon's science-based approach to conservation, education and advocacy advances wildlife and wildlife habitat conservation in Maine. Its citizen science programs connect Maine people to engaging volunteer opportunities that make meaningful contributions to conservation research. The largest Maine-based wildlife conservation organization, Maine Audubon has eight centers and wildlife sanctuaries and serves over 50,000 people annually, with 15,000 members and 2,000 volunteers. Please visit www.maineaudubon.org for more information.

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