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500 Butterflies [Paperback]

Ken Preston-Mafham

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500 Butterflies

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First Sentence
In the normal form of this widespread butterfly the forewing of the male is red, with the upper half transparent. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.7 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A Huge Disappointment 31 Dec 2007
By Richard S. Fisher - Published on
I looked forward to this new book of butterfly pictures and was most disappointed in it. If you know anything at all about butterflies then I would suggest NOT buying this book.

The size is approximately 6 by 6 1/2 inches. The pictures are of reasonable size but I would suggest 30% to 40% of the pictures are of the butterflies with their wings folded!!!

Anyone familiar with butterflies knows the most beautiful pose for a butterfly is for its wings to be open. The upper and underside of most butterflies are totally different and the "inside" is usually, although not always, the most beautiful.

Some of the most beautiful butterflies in the world are not shown - not even one!!! No Agris, Prepona, or Ornithopera are included for example. Only 3 Morphos are shown and all of these except the one on the front cover have their wings folded.

The butterflies picked for the book are mostly unspectacular. The choice of Papilios shown is a good example.

The colors are not sharp and crisp and in many cases the photograph appears to be underexposed.

The data on each butterflies is very good but the page is titled with the common name which of course unless you live in Africa or South American for example means absolutley nothing to the North American. The scientific name is shown on each page but not as the title of that page.

Basically a great disappointment. Butterfly calenders are much more spectacular color wise than this book. Most of the colors are washed out.

If you really love butterflies for their color and color pattern this is NOT the book for you.
4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Book For The Money 30 Mar 2014
By chondroman - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book has good photographs of Butterflies.One page each for each Butterfly plus a little information on each one.I wish there was more information on Butterflies in general.There is a little but not enough to give you a good idea how they live or for how long.It is good book for identification but many Butterflies are shown with the wings folded which makes it hard for a novice to identify.The pictures were taken on location of live animals rather pinned museum specimens.I bought this book on Amazon in good condition for $4.55 and is well worth the money.It sells for $30.00 new.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN BETTER - A PITY 8 Jan 2009
By D. Blankenship - Published on
So very much work went into this work that I sort of hate to mark it down, but down I must. After going through this fat little volume I kept feeling "what is the point." Yes, there are 500 pictures of butterflies in this volume, but as has been pointed out by another reviewer here, many, many of them are pictured with their wings closed, an oversight, that in my opinion, is a disaster. I suppose in some ways, I was sort of insulted by this. One of my hobbies, one that I have spent years at, is photographing various insects, plants, animals and critters in general. To photograph a butterfly with its wings unfolded takes a tremendous amount of work and a tremendous amount of patience and skill. To be quite frank, I seldom if ever even bother anymore to take a shot if the wings are no displayed. I must admit to being a bit insulted. I am a rank amature, and to be honest, some of my work is better than I found here.

Again, like another reviewer here, I was rather taken back that these beautiful insects were listed under their common name as headings. Now this would be fine if these were all North American butterflies, but few are. This made the information, if not useless, then difficult to find as the author did include the scientific name, but only added this information in the little text accompanying each photograph.

While the quality of the photographs are reasonable, they certainly not the best I have ever seen. Each photograph gives the scientific name (not in order), family, wing span (useful information), larval food plant (useful information), range (somewhat vague at times) and of course common name.

The representative butterflies come from 14 different families. Some from the 4,000 species found in Africa are represents as are some of the 8,000 from the American Tropics. Asian species are not as well represented as there are only 2,900 species found there.

All in all, this is a fine one to check out from the library, but I certainly would not lay down my hard earned money for a copy. There are certainly better works out there. I did give this one two stars simply for the effort though. It must have taken a lot of work putting this thing together.

Don Blankenship
The Ozarks
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Butterfly reference 8 May 2013
By hoppy - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
My daughter loves butterflies. This book was perfect for her!
Each page features a photo of each type of butterfly. Bright colors, great images.

Now, when she sees a butterfly, she raced to get her book, pouring over the pages, until she finds the "match".
Highly recommended!
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Book 4 May 2012
By butterflyjb - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a really wonderful book; the photographs are fabulous. I bought it as a pictoral reference book but it is also very informative and educational. It looks great on the coffee table, too!
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