`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.
Is the information for this product incomplete, wrong or inappropriate?
Let us know about it.
Does this product have an incorrect or missing image?
Send us a new image.
Is this product missing categories?
Add more categories.
Review This Product
No reviews yet - be the first to create one!