This story is taken from Explorer magazine, a nonfiction reading resource for learners in second to fifth grade, published by National Geographic Society. Have learners read the story and then test their comprehension with the reading and/or content activities included in the story.

The Four that Roar

Purring cats have a bone in their voiceboxes that lions, tigers, jaguars, and leopards are missing.

Noun

a modification of an organism or its parts that makes it more fit for existence. An adaptation is passed from generation to generation.

apex predator
Noun

species at the top of the food chain, with no predators of its own. Also called an alpha predator or top predator.

climate
Noun

all weather conditions for a given location over a period of time.

conservationist
Noun

person who works to preserve natural habitats.

function
Verb

to work or work correctly.

Noun

environment where an organism lives throughout the year or for shorter periods of time.

poach
Verb

to hunt, trap, or fish illegally.

structure
Noun

system of organization.

wildlife reserve
Noun

area set aside and protected by the government or other organization to maintain wildlife habitat. Also called a nature preserve.