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The Bees of the World Hardcover – May 4, 2007

9 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0801885730 ISBN-10: 0801885736 Edition: 2nd

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Frequently Bought Together

The Bees of the World + Flies: The Natural History and Diversity of Diptera + Bumble Bees of North America: An Identification Guide (Princeton Field Guides)
Price for all three: $276.12

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Editorial Reviews

Review

The author has produced a new definitive world taxonomic treatise on this large group of insects and is to be congratulated.

(British Journal of Entomology and Natural History)

It is a masterpiece, an instant classic of entomology.

(E. O. Wilson)

Review

"It is a masterpiece, an instant classic of entomology." -- Edward O. Wilson

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 992 pages
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press; 2nd edition (May 4, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801885736
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801885730
  • Product Dimensions: 10.1 x 7.3 x 2.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,009,115 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

33 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Matthew Shepherd on September 13, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Anybody with a serious interest in bees -- and by that I don't mean just honey bees and beekeeping, but the thousands of other species that provide the fundamental service of pollination in both natural and agricultural ecosystems -- must seriously consider getting this book. It will be an invaluable resource for both those studying insects and those studying plants, for plant conservation is intimately wrapped up with the survival of their pollinators.
This is a magnum opus in both senses of the word. It is a big book, with over 900 pages, containing a wealth of information on bees. It is also a product of over half a century's research and learning by the world's foremost authority on bees, Charles Michener. His efforts, and those of the subsequent generations of researchers spawned from his lab at the University of Kansas, have been the foundation of our current state of bee knowledge.
At first glance, the book might appear intimidating: a heavy tome printed in a small font size, with black-and-white diagrams. The only respite seems to be a series of gorgeous color plates featuring the amazing photos of Edward S. Ross and Paul Westrich. A few minutes with it will quickly show you that it is a rich source of accurate information, and despite its technical content, well written and readable.
Broken into a series of sections, it provides complete coverage of bees and their biology. The first is a general discussion of bee biology (nesting, floral relationships, parasites, sociality, etc.); the second, explains the structure of bees and their origins; the third, bee taxonomy; and the fourth, (the bulk of the book) contains keys to identify bees and chapters on each family or subfamily with notes on each genera (distribution, floral preference, if any, etc.).
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Robert Jordan on November 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover
First off, I want to make clear what exactly this book is and who should use it. This book is a massive overview of the collective knowledge of bees (as in the ~20,000 described species, not just the honey bee). It is a very scientific work and provides succinct overviews of the different types of bees down to the level of genera. It then points the reader to a number of references that allow further exploration.

This book WILL NOT allow you to identify bees unless you are already an expert. If you are an amateur looking to get into identification, use Discover Life and Bugguide.

The first 130 pages are an in-depth discussion of the biology, behavior, systematics, and history of bees. I know of no other resource that contains so much high-quality comprehensive information crammed into one space. The rest of the book consists of blurbs for the manifold bee families, subfamilies, tribes, and genera. These are chalk full of references to in-depth scientific resources. When you want to know everything there is to know about a certain group, this is the place to start.

It is mind-boggling that one man would have the necessary organization and mental capacity to compile such an exhaustive work. This book belongs on the shelf of every serious bee researcher (or on their hard-drive, as I hear there is an electronic copy floating somewhere).
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By J. A. Haverstick on February 23, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Yes, seems to me it's gone up in price since I bought mine. That's the trend with some of these well-produced academic type references that also appeal to wider public. Unfortunately,if you're interested in the natural history of these animals, you'll have to get it.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For those seriously interested in bees, this book is certainly a must-have. Wonderfully complete, and with tons of references for those who want to dig even deeper.
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By Jennifer Hatt on January 7, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought it for my husband (andyhatt@optonline.net). He loves it. He has his nose in it EVERY night.

Jen Hatt
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