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Hello. My name is Bill and I'm a bad beekeeper. A really bad beekeeper.' So begins Bill Turnbull's charming and often hilarious account of how he stumbled into the world of beekeeping (sometimes literally). Despite many setbacks - including being stung (twice) on his first day of training - beekeeping somehow taught Bill a great deal about himself, and the world around him. The Bad Beekeeper's Club also highlights the very real threats to Britain's bee population. One in every three tablespoons of food derives directly from the pollinating process of the humble bumble bee. But hives are collapsing at an accelerating rate with significant environmental consequences. Fascinating and extremely funny, The Bad Beekeeper's Club is a universally appealing story about a very singular passion.
This title offers a guide to the world of arthropods, covering many insect orders, including beetles, flies, stick insects, dragonflies, ants and wasps, as well as microscopic creatures. It provides a fascinating overview of insects and spiders, including their habitats and classification, all shown in over 195 beautiful photographs and illustrations. All aspects of insect life are covered, such as the way insects defend themselves and how they are able to jump, leap and fly. It describes cryptic coloration, and the way insects can use camouflage to blend into their background and escape attack from predators. It offers various methods of feeding are discussed, from biting and chewing to lapping, sucking, piercing and filter feeding, according to their different mouthparts. It outlines their useful role in pollination of crops, production of honey, and removing insect pests. In the arthropoda phylum, insects are one of the most successful species, and spiders are one of the largest groups. This book studies how they organize their lives. The first section provides information of every aspect of insect life: evolution, anatomy, life cycles, flight and social organization. The last section describes the 30 orders within the class Insecta, demonstrating the huge variety of insects, from microscopic creatures to giant stick insects and large beetles. Typical features of insects in each order are highlighted. With expert text, illustrations and clear photographs, this guide will be enjoyed by all who take an interest in natural history.
During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, natural and social scientists began comparing certain insects to human social organization. Entomologists theorized that social insects -- such as ants, bees, wasps, and termites -- organize themselves into highly specialized, hierarchical divisions of labor. Using a distinctly human vocabulary that reflected the dominant social structure of the time, they described insects as queens, workers, and soldiers and categorized their behaviors with words like marriage, slavery, farming, and factories. At the same time, sociologists working to develop a model for human organization compared people to insects, relying on the same premise that humans arrange themselves hierarchically. In Debugging the Link between Social Theory and Social Insects, Diane M. Rodgers explains how these co-constructed theories reinforced one another, thereby naturalizing Western conceptions of race, class, and gender as they gained prominence in popular culture and the scientific world.
Using a critical science studies perspective not previously applied to research on social insect symbolism, Rodgers attempts to "debug" this theoretical co-construction. She provides sufficient background information to accommodate readers unfamiliar with entomology -- including in-depth explanations of the terms used in the research and discussion of social insects, particularly the insect sociality scale. The entire premise of sociality for insects depends on a dominant understanding of high/low civilization standards -- particularly the tenets of a specialized division of labor and hierarchy -- comparisons that appear to be informed by nineteenth-century colonial thought. Placing these theories in a historical and cross-cultural context, Rodgers explains why hierarchical ideas gained prominence, despite the existence of opposing theories in the literature, and how they resulted in an inhibiting vocabulary that relies more heavily on metaphors than on description.
Such analysis is necessary, Rodgers argues, because it sheds light both on newly proposed scientific models and on future changes in human social structures. Contemporary scientists have begun to challenge the traditional understanding of insect social organization and to propose new interdisciplinary models that combine ideas about social insect and human organizational structure with computer technologies. Without a thorough understanding of how the old models came about, residual language and embedded assumptions may remain and continue to reinforce hierarchical social constructions.
This intriguing interdisciplinary book makes an important contribution to the history -- and future -- of science and sociology.
Earwigs, silverfish and blood-sucking bedbugs are just a few of the species this guide will help you to identify and control in your home and garden. This beautifully illustrated guide highlights over 75 species of wood chewers, blood suckers, garden wreckers and food pests ranging from cockroaches and slugs to your neighbor's pets. Also includes information on good bugs that feed on household pests. Laminated for durability, this handy guide is an ideal source of portable information and ideal for use by novices and experts alike. Made in the USA.
?The stunning pipevine swallowtail is one of over 850 species of butterflies and moths found in this region. This beautifully illustrated guide highlights over 70 familiar and unique species and includes information on their life cycle and features illustrations of common caterpillars and pupae. Laminated for durability, this lightweight, pocket-sized folding guide is an excellent source of portable information and ideal for field use by visitors and residents alike. Made in the USA.
Matthew Oates has led a butterflying life. Naturalist, conservationist and passionate lover of poetry, he has devoted himself to these exalted creatures: to their observation, to singing their praises, and to ensuring their survival. Based on fifty years of detailed diaries, In Pursuit of Butterflies is the chronicle of this life. Oates leads the reader through a lifetime of butterflying, across the mountain tops, the peat bogs, sea cliffs, meadows, heaths, the chalk downs and great forests of the British Isles. Full of humour, zeal, digression, expertise and anecdote, this book provides a profound encounter with one of our great butterfly lovers, and with a half-century of butterflies in Britain.
Spiders have a problem, and it's us. Despite their magnificent talents for crafting webs, capturing mosquitoes, and camouflage, for millennia arachnophobia has hampered our ability to appreciate these eight-legged and -eyed marvels. No longer! In this witty, accessible, and beautifully illustrated guide, Eleanor Spicer Rice and Christopher M. Buddle metamorphose creepy-crawly revulsion into spider wonder. Emerging from ambitious citizen science project Your Wild Life (an initiative based at North Carolina State University), Dr. Eleanor's Book of Spiders with Chris Buddle provides an eye-opening arachnological overview of the natural history of species most noted by project participants, showcasing some of the fascinating spiders found in our attics and tents, front lawns and forests and even introducing us to spiders that fish. Exploring species from the tiny (but gymnastic) zebra jumping spider to the naturally shy and woefully misunderstood black widow, this guide will be a tremendous resource for teachers, students, and scientists alike. But more than this, it will transform the way we perceive the environment around us by deepening our understanding of its littlest inhabitants, inspiring all of us to find our inner naturalist, get outside, and crawl across the dirt magnifying glass in hand.
This easy-to-use identification guide to the 292 species of insect most commonly seen in Australia is perfect for resident and visitor alike. High quality photographs from Australia's top nature photographers are accompanied by detailed species descriptions, which include nomenclature, size, distribution, habitat and habits. The user-friendly introduction covers modern Australian insects, non-insect hexapods and life cycles. Also included is a checklist of the insect families of Australia listing the number of genera, species and subspecies in each family.
Eyes with more than 6,000 separate lenses; bodies so hairy that they attract pollen by static; the ability to communicate by dancing... bee stats are endlessly engrossing. And the bee is as important to the production of human food as any machine; without the bees to pollinate them, most of our crops would be dead in the field. So how did this furry little workaholic come to be so crucial to the planet? The Bee: A Natural History answers that question and many more, looking at bee development from 65 million years ago to today, when over 20,000 bee species have been identified and beekeeping is enjoying a surge in popularity. Exploring evolution, anatomy, society, behaviour, and the human factor, and presenting a visual directory of 40 bee breeds alongside practical fact panels, this is the book that will become a buzz word for every keeper, student, or lover of bees.
Every fall, spectacular orange and black clouds of monarch butterflies fill the skies as they migrate from across North America to Central Mexico. West Coast populations make a similar though much shorter trip to coastal California. The National Wildlife Federation calls the monarch migration "one of the greatest natural phenomena in the insect world." Not long ago, monarchs numbered in the billions, but in the last 20 years their population has dropped by 90%, due to habitat loss from pesticides, modern farming practices, urban development and other human activity. An estimated one million acres of habitat are lost each year. But today, an army of citizen scientists, students and gardeners is engaged in restoring this beloved pollinator's habitat - the wildflowers and milkweed and feeding corridors - so that one of nature's most beautiful creatures will still be there for generations to come. And it starts in our own backyards. The Monarch showcases this magnificent butterfly with eye-popping photos, fun facts about a monarch's life cycle, and things to know about the vital role that pollinators play in our ecosystem. Monarch enthusiast and nature blogger Kylee Baumle provides "action" projects for all ages, from planting milkweed and wildflowers to making butterfly watering stations...to volunteer activism.
Bumblebees are some of our most familiar insects, and are among the few that are almost universally viewed as 'friendly' - their low buzzing is the quintessential sound of our gardens in the summertime. Spotlight Bumblebees considers all 24 UK bumblebee species, examining what made the group so successful and how circumstances have led to the survival of some species but the precipitous decline of the majority, highlighting the dangers we all face if populations continue to plummet. Separate chapters cover all aspects of bumblebees' biology and lifestyles, from spring queens emerging from dark overwintering chambers to establish their nests, to the drone swarms that herald the end of the bumblebee season. Bumblebees around the world are studied, including in the southern hemisphere where Europe's declining species can become harmful invaders. While the influence of bumblebees throughout our history and their place in our culture, from Shakespeare to Transformers, is also examined.
Great French entomologist's charming essays on insect life combine scientific rigor with the style of a literary classic. Beautifully written passages reveal the intricate, fascinating worlds of the beetle, cicada, praying mantis, glow-worm, wasp, grub, cricket, locust, and other creatures as they hunt, build nests, feed families, and more. Rare volume will delight any naturalist.
This Naturalists' Handbook aims to attract more people to the study of solitary wasps by describing the ecology, distribution and natural history of these insects, including all relevant research in one convenient volume. Contents include an overview of the natural history of the solitary wasp, guidelines on identification, and advice on techniques and approaches to study. Further reading, a systematic checklist of genera and an alphabetical checklist of species and their distributions are included. Detailed keys to the identification of the species form the centre of the book and the text is accompanied by clear illustrations throughout, making this an invaluable practical guide for anyone seeking to broaden their knowledge of these fascinating, diverse creatures. Smaller, gentler and less intimidating than the black and yellow social wasps, the solitary wasps are attractive because of their bright colours and their fascinating behaviour. A female wasp will construct a nest, excavating it from wood or sand or building it from mud. She provisions the nest with prey, hunting down a suitable creature, perhaps a caterpillar or a fly, which she will paralyse before dragging it home to the nest. She lays her egg on the paralysed prey, and the larva when it hatches feeds on the prey. On a sunny day it is easy to observe the apparently purposeful behaviour of female wasps as they prepare their nests and stock them with food for the next generation. This book is a digital reprint of ISBN 0-85546-295-7 (1995). Naturalists' Handbooks encourage and enable those interested in natural history to undertake field study, make accurate identifications and to make original contributions to research.
In Butterfly Biology Systems Roger Dennis explores key topics and contentious issues in butterfly biology, specifically those in life history and behaviour. Uniquely, using a systems approach, the book focuses on the degree of integration and feedback between components and elements affecting each issue, as well as the links between different issues. The book comprises four sections. The first two sections introduce the reader to principles and approaches for investigating complex relationships, and provide a platform of knowledge on butterfly biology. The final two sections deal in turn with life history and behaviour, covering key issues affecting different stages of development from eggs to adults. The book is extensively illustrated with original diagrams and models, all of which have detailed legends, produced to enhance a broader understanding, and to provide templates for future research. It includes a detailed bibliography and glossary providing an essential gateway to the extensive literature on butterfly biology. Butterfly Biology Systems is essential reading for graduate students and researchers in insect ecology, evolution, behaviour and conservation. It will also be of great value to anyone interested in butterflies. Introduces a systems approach to butterfly biology Includes succinct reviews of the key interrelationships in butterfly life history and behaviour Illustrates more than 100 models to advance research into butterfly biology systems
In the great naturalist tradition of E. O. Wilson, Jae Choe takes readers into a miniature world dominated by six-legged organisms. This is the world of the ant, an insect that humans, as well as most other life forms, depend upon for their very survival.
Easily one of the most important animals on earth, ants seem to mirror the actions, emotions, and industries of the human population, often more effectively than humans do themselves. They developed ranching and farming long before humans, and their division of labor resembles the assembly lines of automobile factories and multinational enterprises. Self-sacrifice and a finely tuned chemical language are the foundations of their monarchical society, which is capable of waging large-scale warfare and taking slaves. Tales of their massacres and atrocities, as well as struggles for power, are all too reminiscent of our own. The reality of ant society is more fascinating than even the most creative minds could imagine. Choe combines expert scientific knowledge with a real passion for these miniscule marvels. His vivid descriptions are paired with captivating illustrations and photographs to introduce readers to the economics, culture, and intrigue of the ant world. All of nature is revealed through the secret lives of the amazing ants. In the words of the author, "Once you get to know them, you'll love them."
Did you know that for every human on earth, there are about one million ants? They are among the longest-lived insects with some ant queens passing the thirty-year mark as well as some of the strongest. Fans of both the city and countryside alike, ants decompose dead wood, turn over soil (in some places more than earthworms), and even help plant forests by distributing seeds. But while fewer than thirty of the nearly one thousand ant species living in North America are true pests, we cringe when we see them marching across our kitchen floors. No longer! In this witty, accessible, and beautifully illustrated guide, Eleanor Spicer Rice, Alex Wild, and Rob Dunn metamorphose creepy-crawly revulsion into myrmecological wonder. Emerging from Dunn's ambitious citizen science project Your Wild Life (an initiative based at North Carolina State University), Dr. Eleanor's Book of Common Ants provides an eye-opening entomological overview of the natural history of species most noted by project participants and even offers tips on keeping ant farms in your home. Exploring species from the spreading red imported fire ant to the pavement ant, and featuring Wild's stunning photography, this guide will be a tremendous resource for teachers, students, and scientists alike. But more than this, it will transform the way we perceive the environment around us by deepening our understanding of its littlest inhabitants, inspiring everyone to find their inner naturalist, get outside, and crawl across the dirt magnifying glass in hand.
Who has the answer to the world's fuel problems? How can we bring ruined land back to life? Where do roboticists turn when they try to engineer a hive mind? Termites. Strange though it seems, scientists look to tiny termites for answers to some big ideas. Lisa Margonelli tracks them, deep into their mounds to find out how termites can change the world. Underbug: An Obsessive Tale of Termites and Technology touches on everything from meditation, innovation and the psychology of obsession to good old-fashioned biology.
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