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Insectopedia uncovers the fascinating and infinitely varied world of insects. It explores their intriguing behaviour and biology – from mating and breeding, metamorphosis and movement to sight, smell, hearing and their adaptations to heat and cold.
A chapter on superorganisms probes the curious phenomenon of social communities among insects; another covers the critical role that these creatures play in maintaining the fragile balance of life on our planet. The book concludes with a 60-page illustrated field guide, describing most insect orders and their main families.
Previously published as Insectlopedia of Southern Africa, this fully revised and redesigned edition includes up-to-date information throughout, an expanded ID section, and several hundred new photographs.
This book intensively covers a never-before-explored aspect of Southern African nature and is an essential new addition to the library of every nature lover. It was researched and written over the last four and a half years to open a door to a little known micro-world that exists all around us. Invertebrates – which include commonly seen creatures such as butterflies, spiders, beetles, worms and scorpions – are everywhere. The signs of their day-to-day activities are all around us if we know where to look.
The life cycles and behaviours of many animals are discussed, with a special focus on interactions between mammals and invertebrates – a fascinating subject in itself.
While working on this book, Lee Gutteridge spent many hours in the field with expert entomologists and arachnologists, many of whom commented that; even though they had spent a lifetime in the field, this experience, of invertebrate tracking, had changed the way that they see the invertebrate world.
With funding received from the Oppenheimer family, 250 copies will be donated to indigenous trackers, whose knowledge Lee appreciates and respects.
The new book by the author of the Sunday Times bestseller, Millie Marotta's Animal Kingdom. Enter Millie's wonderful world of treetop treasures and discover the birds nesting and flying high up in the treetops, and the myriad creatures found among the branches. The enchanting illustrations to colour in range from birds such Major Mitchell's cockatoo and rose robins, to the magnolia warbler, silver-eared mesia and whiskered treeswift. As well as the beautiful birds of the world, Millie's intricate designs show the more unusual creatures residing in the treetops, such as the Amazonian milk frog, the sugar glider or the tree-kangaroo. Millie's inimitable style is treasured by thousands around the world and in this new, exciting book there are all sorts of creatures and fauna waiting to be coloured in, from tiny insects to winged beasts and scaled reptiles to buds and blossoms. The world's rainforests, woodlands and thickets are teeming with life and this book guarantees hours of relaxation and colouring fun.
The first book in a fresh, funny new series for readers aged 7+, illustrated by Alex G. Griffiths! When little spider Milton discovers he's been branded deadly on social media - and is targeted by pest-killers BugKILL - he fears for his life and the future of his species. Alongside his BFFs, big hairy Ralph and spindly daddy-long-legs Audrey, he searches for a way to clear his name. But to succeed, Milton realises he must communicate with his house humans, a schoolgirl called Zoe - and her arachnophobic dad. Is he mighty enough to achieve the impossible?
A journey into the weird, wonderful and truly astonishing lives of the small but mighty creatures who keep the world turning. Out of sight, underfoot, unseen beyond fleeting scuttles or darting flights, insects occupy a hidden world, yet are essential to sustaining life on earth. Insects influence our ecosystem like a ripple effect on water. They arrived when life first moved to dry land, they preceded - and survived - the dinosaurs, they outnumber the grains of sand on all the world's beaches, and they will be here long after us. Working quietly but tirelessly, they give us food, uphold our ecosystems, can heal our wounds and even digest plastic. They could also provide us with new solutions to the antibiotics crisis, assist in disaster zones and inspire airforce engineers with their flying techniques. But their private lives are also full of fun, intrigue and wonder -musical mating rituals; house-hunting for armies of beetle babies; metamorphosing into new characters; throwing parties in fermenting sap; cultivating fungi for food; farming smaller species for honey dew and always ensuring that what is dead is decomposed, ready to become life once again. Here, we will discover life and death, drama and dreams, all on a millimetric scale. Like it or not, Earth is the planet of insects, and this is their extraordinary story.
Many have remarked on the poetic names of our butterflies and moths. Their beauty fires our imaginations. Some are named after human occupations and social rank: Emperors, footmen, a miller, quakers, lackeys, `rustics' and chimney-sweeps. Still more are named after animals: tigers, hawks, goats, sharks, even pug dogs. There are species named after jewels, musical instruments, fabrics, letters, carpets, flowers, heraldry and shells. Some names are downright baffling. Why was one butterfly called an `admiral' and another, an `argus'? Why, for that matter, are they called `butterflies'? The scientific names, too, contain many allusions. One whole subset of moths is named after weddings. Another group is named after souls. A great many names are cherry-picked from classical tales and legends, often with relevance to a particular butterfly or moth. Some names are spooky, even sexy. Or funny, for Latin names contain word games and jokes. There has never been an accessible and comprehensive guide to the names of our butterflies and moths, both English and Latin. This book, written with Peter Marren's usual wit and insight, takes you on a journey back to a time before the arts and science were divided. When entomologists were also poets and painters, and when a gift for vivid language went hand-in-hand with a deep pre-Darwinian fascination for the emerging natural world.
Discover the bugs and creepy-crawlies of the world in this delightfully silly sticker book, illustrated by Mariana Ruiz Johnson. From slithery snails to busy worker ants, each spread is full of facts and animals, with plenty of space for you to add your stickers. And you can be as sensible or as silly as you like - why not give a grasshopper a guitar to play or dress a worm in a party hat? With over 300 stickers, this book will keep young animal lovers busy for hours!
A remarkable look at the rarest butterflies, how global changes threaten their existence, and how we can bring them back from near-extinction Most of us have heard of such popular butterflies as the Monarch or Painted Lady. But what about the Fender (TM)s Blue? Or the St. Francis (TM) Satyr? Because of their extreme rarity, these butterflies are not well-known, yet they are remarkable species with important lessons to teach us. The Last Butterflies spotlights the rarest of these creatures "some numbering no more than what can be held in one hand. Drawing from his own first-hand experiences, Nick Haddad explores the challenges of tracking these vanishing butterflies, why they are disappearing, and why they are worth saving. He also provides startling insights into the effects of human activity and environmental change on the planet (TM)s biodiversity. Weaving a vivid and personal narrative with ideas from ecology and conservation, Haddad illustrates the race against time to reverse the decline of six butterfly species. Many scientists mistakenly assume we fully understand butterflies (TM) natural histories. Yet, as with the Large Blue in England, we too often know too little and the conservation consequences are dire. Haddad argues that a hands-off approach is not effective and that in many instances, like for the Fender (TM)s Blue and Bay Checkerspot, active and aggressive management is necessary. With deliberate conservation, rare butterflies can coexist with people, inhabit urban fringes, and, in the case of the St. Francis (TM) Satyr, even reside on bomb ranges and military land. Haddad shows that through the efforts to protect and restore butterflies, we might learn how to successfully confront conservation issues for all animals and plants. A moving account of extinction, recovery, and hope, The Last Butterflies demonstrates the great value of these beautiful insects to science, conservation, and people.
The Garden Jungle is about the wildlife that lives right under our noses, in our gardens and parks, between the gaps in the pavement, and in the soil beneath our feet. Wherever you are right now, the chances are that there are worms, woodlice, centipedes, flies, silverfish, wasps, beetles, mice, shrews and much, much more, quietly living within just a few paces of you. Dave Goulson gives us an insight into the fascinating and sometimes weird lives of these creatures, taking us burrowing into the compost heap, digging under the lawn and diving into the garden pond. He explains how our lives and ultimately the fate of humankind are inextricably intertwined with that of earwigs, bees, lacewings and hoverflies, unappreciated heroes of the natural world. The Garden Jungle is at times an immensely serious book, exploring the environmental harm inadvertently done by gardeners who buy intensively reared plants in disposable plastic pots, sprayed with pesticides and grown in peat cut from the ground. Goulson argues that gardens could become places where we can reconnect with nature and rediscover where food comes from. With just a few small changes, our gardens could become a vast network of tiny nature reserves, where humans and wildlife can thrive together in harmony rather than conflict. For anyone who has a garden, and cares about our planet, this book is essential reading.
BBC RADIO 4 BOOK OF THE WEEK JULY 2018
Bees are like oxygen: ubiquitous, essential, and, for the most part, unseen. While we might overlook them, they lie at the heart of relationships that bind the human and natural worlds.
In Buzz, the award-winning author of Feathers and The Triumph of Seeds takes us on a journey that begins 125 million years ago, when a wasp first dared to feed pollen to its young.
From honeybees and bumbles to lesser-known diggers, miners, leafcutters, and masons, bees have long been central to our harvests, our mythologies, and our very existence. They’ve given us sweetness and light, the beauty of flowers, and as much as a third of the foodstuffs we eat. And, alarmingly, they are at risk of disappearing.
As informative and enchanting as the waggle dance of a honeybee, Buzz shows us why all bees are wonders to celebrate and protect. Read this book and you'll never overlook them again.
**A BEAUTIFUL NEW SERIES FOR NATURE LOVERS** This striking book displays and describes a kaleidoscope of butterflies. Exquisite illustrations accompany a lyrical text by nature writer and expert James Lowen. Press-out sections enable you to reveal the outlines of the butterflies and transform your book into a work of art.
`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.
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