Insects and Flowers: A Biological Partnership

Overview

In this visually exciting and fascinating book, Dr John Brackenbury has developed further his remarkable photographic techniques to show exactly what happens at the very heart of the intimate natural relationship of insects and flowers. In superb detail, over 160 photographs and accompanying text set out the wide range of floral shapes and pollinating mechanisms which exploit that relationship. Indeed, some adaptations are so specific that only a single one from all the many thousands of insect species is capable...
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Overview

In this visually exciting and fascinating book, Dr John Brackenbury has developed further his remarkable photographic techniques to show exactly what happens at the very heart of the intimate natural relationship of insects and flowers. In superb detail, over 160 photographs and accompanying text set out the wide range of floral shapes and pollinating mechanisms which exploit that relationship. Indeed, some adaptations are so specific that only a single one from all the many thousands of insect species is capable of providing the service that a particular flower needs. Yet even these unique partnerships contain the essential element of mutual reward and benefit - pollination and food. Taking once more his inspiration from personal observations and experience of the insect world, the author provides a glimpse into the amazing workings of flowers and insects. It is an inspiration, too, for the reader, encouraging personal observation and study of the natural world, which heightens the appreciation of the unique intimacy that exists between insects and flowers.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Similar in format and appearance to his earlier Insects: Life Cycles and the Seasons (LJ 1/95), this volume by British author/photographer Brackenbury (zoology, Cambridge) emphazises his remarkable color photographs, over 160 of which are found here. The relatively brief yet informative text helps explain the details of the images. The author reminds us that scientists have long recognized that floral colors are meant for pollinators-bees, beetles, butterflies, and other insects-and not for people. We humans, however, can certainly appreciate the beauty of flowers as captured in these photographs. Two of the chapters consider how insects see their world, and other chapters deal with flowers as a source of nectar and pollen, the process of pollination, and insects and flowers in a dry climate. Brackenbury's photography illustrates the coevolution of plants and pollinating insects far more effectively than could words alone. More than just another pretty book, this volume has great educational value and deserves consideration by public, school, and academic libraries.-William H. Wiese, Iowa State Univ. Lib., Ames
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780713724912
  • Publisher: Blandford Press
  • Publication date: 10/1/1995
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 11.22 (w) x 11.22 (h) x 0.73 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction 7
1 The Flower as a Food Source 9
2 The Market for Pollen 27
3 Flower Types and their Pollination 49
4 The Visual World of an Insect 89
5 How Insects See Flowers 101
6 Insects and Flowers in a Dry Climate 125
Further Reading 156
Acknowledgements 157
Index 159
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