The Bug Scientists

The Bug Scientists

by Donna M. Jackson
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

Small is beautiful—or so the bug scientists of the world believe. Insects, they say, boast qualities the rest of us have perhaps overlooked. They are among the earth’s best fliers and farmers. They have survived and adapted for 350 million years, whereas we humans have been around for a mere 10,000 years. There are millions upon millions of species yet

Overview

Small is beautiful—or so the bug scientists of the world believe. Insects, they say, boast qualities the rest of us have perhaps overlooked. They are among the earth’s best fliers and farmers. They have survived and adapted for 350 million years, whereas we humans have been around for a mere 10,000 years. There are millions upon millions of species yet to be identified. Indeed, insects are perhaps nature’s least celebrated but most successful creatures on earth.
By following the footsteps of several bug scientists, we take a closer look at the extraordinary bugs that crawl, swim, and whiz past us. We visit the morgue, drop by an outdoor classroom, witness a bug bowl festival—complete with a cricket-spitting contest (yuck!)—and travel to the rain forests of Costa Rica—all in pursuit of a better understanding of bugs, glorious bugs.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The much-maligned world of insects becomes fascinating in this latest entry in the excellent Scientists in the Field Series... With its crisp photos and lively story angles and language, this is sure to attract young readers." Booklist, ALA, Starred Review

"...sure to be popular with teachers and children alike and it may inspire many young readers to seek careers in entomology." School Library Journal

"Bug-happy young readers will come away with both general information about insects, and an idea of how a fascination with them can turn into a career path." Kirkus Reviews

Children's Literature
From start to finish, this book is a compelling and fun-to-read example of how good nonfiction can be. It provides a current look at five bug-researchers and their work in the areas of monarch butterfly watches, using bugs in forensic research ("this section may be hazardous to your lunch"), "training" bugs for the movies, a man whose mission is to make bugs interesting to kids, and another who studies an amazing ant species that tends its cattle aphids and farms fungus. Vibrant pictures, endmatter that includes a sort of Ripley's believe-it-or-not insect stats, a glossary of "Buzz Words," a short but excellent bibliography of other related children's books and websites, and an index further this book's use in the science classroom. Parts would make fine read-alouds, and the idea that we are still learning about the insect world is great for would-be researchers to hear. This is another entry in the cutting-edge and excellent "Scientists in the Field" series. 2002, Houghton Mifflin,
— Susan Hepler
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-Jackson introduces four people with an interest in and knowledge of insects. Tom Turpin, a professor with a mission to make everyone interested in his field, feeds his students insect-based goodies and runs a yearly Bug Bowl in which contestants compete at cricket spitting and other contests. Valerie Cervenka, a forensic entomologist, gives essential information to crime investigators such as the time of death of a murder victim based on the insect infestation of the body. Steven Kutcher provides insect actors for Hollywood films, while Ted Schultz travels to rain forests to study farmer ants. Jackson also introduces the Monarch Watch program and some of the children and scientists who participate in it. Many well-reproduced color photographs add to the book's appeal. The author weaves in much information about the insects, devoting fully half of the text to them, including an "Amazing Insects" list of superlatives in the end, most of the glossary ("Buzz Words"), and bibliography ("Gone Buggy?"). While this is fascinating material covered in a lively manner, it does tend to take focus away from the scientists. There are many insect books and too few books about scientists and what they do for this audience. Nevertheless, this welcome successor to Jackson's The Bone Detectives (Little, Brown, 1996) and The Wildlife Detectives (Houghton, 2000) is sure to be popular with teachers and children alike and it may inspire many young readers to seek careers in entomology.-Louise L. Sherman, formerly at Anna C. Scott School, Leonia, NJ Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Jackson (Wildlife Detectives: How Forensic Scientists Fight Crimes Against Nature, 2000, etc.) profiles four people for whom there's no "ugh" in "bug." Ted Schultz studies ants, particularly the kinds that have been "farming" fungi for millions of years; Valerie Cervenka gathers insect evidence from corpses for law-enforcement agencies; Tom Turpin teaches entomology-but also organizes an annual "Bug Bowl" that features such crowd-pleasers as a cricket-spitting contest; and Steven Kutcher is a bug wrangler for films and TV. Big, bright color photos of the last two happily posing with a variety of creepy-crawlies on their bodies aren't the only pictures here with great grossout potential, and Jackson also tucks in the basics of insect anatomy, a look at the monarch butterfly's life cycle, and a page of insect world records. Bug-happy young readers will come away with both general information about insects, and an idea of how a fascination with them can turn into a career path. (Nonfiction. 10-13)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780618432325
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
03/23/2004
Series:
Scientists in the Field Series
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
48
Product dimensions:
11.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.13(d)
Age Range:
10 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Donna M. Jackson is an award-winning author of nonfiction books for children and holds a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her works include the critically acclaimed Elephant Scientists, Bone Detectives, Bug Scientists, and Wildlife Detectives—all honored by the NSTA/CBC’s Outstanding Science Trade Book for Children award; ER Vets , an Orbis Pictus and ASPCA Henry Bergh honor book; and Extreme Scientists, named a Smithsonian Notable Book for Children, 2009.

When she’s not writing about scientists in the field, Donna enjoys reading, skiing, gardening, hiking in the mountains, and spending time with her family. She lives in Colorado. Learn more about Donna at her website: http://www.donnamjackson.net.

Donna M. Jackson is an award-winning author of many science books for young readers. Her works include the critically acclaimed Elephant Scientists, Bone Detectives, Bug Scientists, and Wildlife Detectives—all honored by the NSTA/CBC’s Outstanding Science Trade Book for Children award; ER Vets, an Orbis Pictus and ASPCA Henry Bergh honor book; and Extreme Scientists, named a Smithsonian Notable Book for Children, 2009. Donna was inspired to write this book on Caitlin’s work after reading about the devastating 2004 Indian Ocean tsunamis and how elephants may be able to sense shockwaves before such catastrophes. Donna lives in Colorado with her husband, Charlie, and their family.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >