Menagerie on a New York Houseboat!

By day, Dr. Leslie Day is a science teacher at a private school in a New Jersey suburb, but on nights and weekends she is the full-time keeper of a menagerie housed on her houseboat and in her classroom. Docked at New York's Hudson River, the boat is where she penned her New York Times best-selling book "A Field Guide to the Natural World of New York City."

Day talks to Paw Nation about her connections between nature and her life, and the animals she cares for.

How many boat people have pets?
Many boat people have pets. Parrots, dogs, and cats live up and down the docks. We help take care of each other's pets when we go away. They are all part of the Boat Basin family.

How do you share the pets among your students?

I allow my students to take some animals home for the long weekends and vacations. This is another way for them to bond. When I go on vacation in the summer, I hire students to come in and take care of the animals. They sometimes do it for community service credit, but I couldn't go away without this help.

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