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How to Know the Spiders (Pictured Key Nature) 3rd Edition

4.1 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0697048981
ISBN-10: 0697048985
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Product Details

  • Series: Pictured Key Nature
  • Spiral-bound: 288 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Science/Engineering/Math; 3 edition (March 1, 1978)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0697048985
  • ISBN-13: 978-0697048981
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 0.6 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #740,500 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By ThatUmbrellaGuy TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 11, 2002
Format: Spiral-bound
Many books written on arachnids are basically recycled jargon boring the reader with misinformation and "common sense" wife's tales. This book, however, was an exception to the rule. The author seems to actually know the subject matter, getting past the "basics" very quickly and introducing you to virtually every family of spider and all of their distinguishing features. Also included are several odd footnotes about the arachnid that I found very useful and that I hadn't seen elsewhere.
The books includes areas on:
1) where to find spiders
2) how you should go about collecting and preserving them
3) parasites and other enemies the spider has
4) the anatomy of the arachnid and how to recognize their sex
5) some useful information about the wondrous effects of spider venom
6) a guide on how to actually study spiders
7) the lists of families and higher categories of all spiders (including pictures of the families that are commonly found)
I personally found it to be an interesting read and would say that anyone interested in Entomology or simply looking into spiders should give it peek. You might thank yourself one day.
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Format: Spiral-bound
As an aspiring arachnologist, this book was exactly what I was looking for. I wouldn't consider it as an easy identification guide for field work, but it has still proven to be an invaluable resource for my studies. If one is familiar with the more technical terms regarding arachnology, this key may be quite beneficial. It does contain a glossary of terms, as well as many picture diagrams of these terms, but previous knowledge helps tremendously. The pictures of the spider bodies are super helpful as well.

Some segments are quite technical, but there are enough portions that most people would be able to follow. Two excerpts from one segment regarding which characteristic would best fit the specimen (which, in this case, happens to be a type of wolf spider):
"Posterior spinnerets distinctly longer than the anterior, with the apical segment conical and at least half as long as the basal. Retromargin of cheliceral fang furrow with usually four stout teeth, sometimes five. (Anterior row of eyes longer than the second row, and females without spines above on tibiae III and IV)...... Sosippus"

"Sosippus mimus: The carapace and abdominal dorsum show white markings on a gray or dark brown ground. Length of female 12.9 to 18.2 mm; of male 13.1 to 14.2 mm. Florida west to Louisiana." (Paired with a figure of the spider body to show said markings.)

Again, this book probably isn't for the 'beginner', however it is fairly easy to follow. A beginner may get a general idea of what spider he or she is looking at. Out of all of my spider books, this is the one I come back to over and over again. I'd highly recommend this as a tool for anyone interested in arachnology!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Book is more on a textbook level than for average identification of garden spiders on the move. B & W illustrations of tiny body parts that would not be easily visible on spiders still in nature. Good for science. Not great for someone wanting to do identification on spiders in the wild.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is not for beginners. It is a manual that gives in detail the anatomical differences among various spiders, which makes it suitable for someone studying spiders in depth. There are many diagrams of various spider parts. A person using this book would need a suitable source of magnification to be able to observe the tiny details on a particular spider. Overall, it is a book suitable for college or post graduate level information.
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Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
The book is OK, but it is not a great help in identifying specific species. Helps narrow finds down to families, but further help will be needed.
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