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Winter Sleepers

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Some like to have fun in the winter cold.

Some like to sleep the winter away.

This is called HIBERNATION.

So who are the winter sleepers?



1. The Squirrel.

The squirrel stores up food for the winter, makes itself a cosy bed in an old tree-trunk, and goes off to sleep.

On warm days in winter, it wakes up, runs out to its store of nuts, has a good meal, and then returns to its bed for another long sleep.



2. The Hedgehog.

As soon as winter comes, the hedgehog makes a cosy little nest among a pile of dead leaves and curls up inside it. It then goes into a very deep and is difficult to waken during the cold season.



3. The Tortoise.

At the first sign of winter, the tortoise finds a warm place and puts itself to sleep, not for the night, but for the whole winter. Each year it passes the cold months hiding and sleeping in some cosy spot.



4. The Badger.

The badger passes a good deal of the winter asleep in his underground home, but now and again it has to go out and get food. After it has fed, it returns to his sett or lair and sleeps for weeks.



5. The Polar Bear

In the cold and frozen places near the North Pole only the mother polar bear may be said to go for a long winter sleep. The polar bear hides away under the snow but keeps open a little passage through which she can get air.




6. The Bat.

Perhaps the soundest of all winter sleepers is the bat. At the end of autumn it may be seen hanging upside down from the rafters of an old building. It stays quite still in this position until the cold weather has passed.



7. The Frog and the Toad.

Frogs and toads sleep very soundly through even the coldest winter. Near the end of autumn they dive down to the bottom of the pond and bury themselves in the mud. Here they are safe and snug during the cold, foodless days of winter.



8. The Snail, the Slug and the Worm.

Snails, slugs and worms are all sound winter sleepers. A snail not only sleeps in a hole in the ground but protects itself from the cold by making a thick cover to close the mouth of the shell. The slug makes a tiny nest in the earth and the worm always makes its tiny winter home deep enough to escape the frost.



9. The Snake and the Lizard.

Snakes and lizards hate cold weather. They hide away in some safe sheltered place, coil themselves and go to sleep during the months of winter.




10. Trees, Plants and Flowers.

Most trees, plants and flowers may be said to sleep during winter. The weather is so cold and there is so little sunshine that they don't get a chance to grow.



In the spring buds appear and everything comes to life again.