Your cart is empty
'A truly excellent account' British Wildlife Beetles are arguably the most diverse organisms in the world, with nearly half a million beetle species described and catalogued in our museums, more than any other type of living thing. This astonishing species diversity is matched by a similar diversity in shape, form, size, life history, ecology, physiology and behaviour. Beetles occur everywhere, and do everything. And yet they form a clearly discrete insect group, typically characterised by their attractively compact form, with flight wings folded neatly under smooth hard wing-cases. Almost anyone could recognise a beetle, indeed many are intimately associated with human society. Groups like ladybirds are familiar to us from a very young age. Large stag beetles and handsome chafers are celebrated for their imposing size and bright colours. The sacred scarabs of the ancient Egyptians were given iconic, if not god-like, status and even though the exact religious meanings may be fading after three millennia, their bewitching jewellery and monumental statuary inspire us still. Despite this ancient and easy familiarity with beetles, the Coleoptera remains tainted by the notion that it is a 'difficult' group of insects. The traditional routes into studying British natural history, through birdwatching, butterfly-collecting and pressing wild flowers, now extend to studying dragonflies, bumblebees, grasshoppers, moths, hoverflies and even shieldbugs. These are on the verge of becoming popular groups, but beetles remain the preserve of the expert, or so it seems. So many British beetles are easy to find and easy to identify by the non-expert, but that bewildering background diversity, and the daunting numbers of species in the Coleoptera as a whole, have been enough to dissuade many a potential coleopterist from grasping the nettle and getting stuck in. Richard Jones' groundbreaking New Naturalist volume on beetles encourages those enthusiasts who would otherwise be put off by the, to date, rather technical literature that has dominated the field, providing a comprehensive natural history of this fascinating and beautiful group of insects.
The bee is not a domestic animal, yet our relationship with this creature is one of the longest-standing between humanity and any other species. Since the earliest times the unique manufacturing and architectural abilities of the bee and its remarkable social organization have been regarded as miraculous. Because of this ancient relationship, bees always carry profound cultural meanings which can tell us much about who we are. Bees are also the subject of an enormous body of legend throughout the temperate world; no less extraordinary is the natural history of the bee, and the ways in which its biological and social organization have been adapted and encouraged by mankind in search of honey.Claire Preston's "Bee" follows the natural and cultural history of our relationship with the bee and the development of these legends, from ancient political descriptions of the bee to Renaissance debates about monarchy, and the accompanying scientific discoveries about insects, to the modern conversion of the virtuous, civil bee into the dangerous swarm of the Hollywood horror flick, and finally to the melancholy recognition that the scientific study of bee behavior gives us a warning to beware our own awful technologies of destruction. Written in a lively, engaging style, and containing many fascinating bee facts, anecdotes, fables, and images, Bee is also a wide-ranging, highly-illustrated meditation on the natural and cultural history of this familiar and much-admired insect. It will appeal to a wide audience: those who work with bees and in honey production; those who appreciate this industrious creature and its intricate, miniature society; and, those too who have an interest in the way animals such as the bee have woven themselves into the fabric of our culture.
You may like...
Britain's Dragonflies - A Field Guide to…
Dave Smallshire, Andy Swash Paperback
The African Dung Beetle Genera
Clarke H. Scholtz, Adrian L.V. Davis, … Hardcover
Sasol First Field Guide to Butterflies…
Simon van Noort Paperback
Insectopedia - The Secret World of…
Erik Holm Paperback (3)
Britain's Butterflies - A Field Guide to…
David Newland, Robert Still, … Paperback
Millie Marotta's Beautiful Birds and…
Millie Marotta Paperback (3)
Sasol First Field Guide to Insects of…
Alan Weaving Paperback
The Little Book of Bees - An Illustrated…
Hilary Kearney Hardcover (1)
The Inside Out of Flies
Erica McAlister Hardcover
Butterflies of Louisiana - A Guide to…
Craig W Marks Paperback R1,177 Discovery Miles 11 770