Bees, wasps, and ants The indispensable role of Hymenoptera in gardens

Eric Grissell

Book - 2010

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Location Call Number   Status
2nd Floor 595.79/Grissell Checked In
Portland, Or. : Timber Press 2010.
Physical Description
335 p. : col. ill. ; 24 cm
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Main Author
Eric Grissell (-)
  • The impact of bees, wasps, and ants on our lives
  • What are Hymenoptera?
  • Some basics of Hymenopteran biology
  • A garden of Hymenoptera
  • The garden's cows: sawflies
  • The garden's police: true parasitoids, stinging parasitoids, and a few surprises
  • The garden's wolves: predatory wasps
  • The garden's pollinators: bees
  • The garden's recyclers: ants.
Review by Choice Review

This well-written, engaging book presents a popular account of a fascinating group of insects. Crammed with a wealth of interesting information about the natural history of the Hymenoptera (i.e., the ants, bees, and wasps), this work is not only suitable for general readers, but even offers a delightful excursion for entomologists interested in some lighter reading. Content is laced with humor and readily accessible to lay audiences. Entomologist/author Grissell (Insects and Gardens, CH, May'02, 39-5186; A Journal in Thyme, CH, Jan'95, 32-2729) keeps jargon to a bare minimum. He presents the material from a gardening perspective, emphasizing feeding and reproductive strategies, ecological roles played by various species in a garden environment (i.e., pollinators, predators, recyclers), and relevance to human activity (including ways in which gardeners might attract these insects and thereby help to ensure creation of gardens with a high degree of insect biodiversity). The fascinating discussion opens a window onto an incredible and diverse array of little-known insect lifestyles. The text is complemented by a nice selection of 144 full-color plates. Several appendixes listing relevant Web sites and suitable references provide interested readers with more detailed information on Hymenoptera families north of Mexico. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All libraries. D. A. Brass independent scholar

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission. Review by Booklist Review

If ever a group of garden creatures gets a bad rap, it's bees, ants, and wasps. Yet, as Grissell so strikingly points out, most of the time their negative reputation is either grossly overstated or decidedly undeserved. Although the role of the order Hymenoptera in garden settings is of vital importance, most homeowners and quite a few gardeners do whatever they can to remove nests, hills, and hives at first sight. It's a knee-jerk reaction that can have devastating results, for these creatures are essential for pollination, fertilization, and even pest-control. Reviewing their impact, revealing their habits and habitats, and profiling them via such inventive terms as the garden's cows, wolves, and police, Grissell strikes a fine balance between scientific examination and anecdotal evidence. Although not sufficiently illustrated to serve as a field guide, Grissell's extensive exploration of this insect order is highly informative and genuinely useful.--Haggas, Carol Copyright 2010 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.