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British Insects: A photographic guide to every common species (Collins Complete Guide) [Paperback]

Michael Chinery
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
RRP: 16.99
Price: 11.89 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

2 April 2009 Collins Complete Guide

A photographic field guide to 1,500 species of insects found in Britain and Ireland

A photographic field guide to all the common and some unusual species of insects across Britain that the keen amateur naturalist is likely to spot. Over 1,500 species are illustrated with detailed photographs chosen for their help in identification.

• Includes photographs of larvae

• Each section is coded with a symbol for easy reference

• Differences between similar species are highlighted to avoid confusion

• Information given on when to look and where to find each species

Insect groups dealt with include butterflies and moths, mayflies, dragonflies, damselflies, grasshoppers, crickets, earwigs, lacewings, bugs, bees, wasps, ants and beetles, all with keys to ensure accurate identification.


Frequently Bought Together

British Insects: A photographic guide to every common species (Collins Complete Guide) + British Wild Flowers: A photographic guide to every common species (Collins Complete Guide) + British Wildlife: A photographic guide to every common species (Collins Complete Guide)
Price For All Three: 35.33

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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Collins (2 April 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007298994
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007298990
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 14 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,781 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

‘An excellent resource’
BBC Wildlife

‘The best starting point for any insect study’
Wildlife and Countryside

About the Author

Michael Chinery is a well-known naturalist and the author of numerous books on insects and garden wildlife, including ‘Collins Nature Guide Garden Wildlife’, ‘The Natural History of the Garden’ and ‘Collins Wildlife Trust Guide Butterflies of Britain and Europe’. For several years he ran field courses to introduce people of all ages to plant and animal life and now lives in Suffolk with his wife Jill.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good general introduction with some reservations 26 July 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
To cover British insects in one volume compromises have to be made. Overall this book has got it about right, in that it provides a colour photograph of the insect, a brief description and miniature distribution map. Roughly 8 insects are covered on a page. The book covers every order of insects found within the British Isles. Hence, as a book to cover all insects it does a reasonable job.

However, there are some disappointments. Over half of the book (158 pages) is devoted to just one order Lepidopdtera (butterflies and moths), leaving just 134 pages for all other insects. This is a great shame, as Lepidopdtera are better covered by other books, and the other orders are poorly represented in print. There are approximately 2000 Lepidopdtera in the British Isles, but there are 4000 Beetles, 5200 True Flies, 1650 True Bugs, as well as representatives in other orders of insects.

Some of the photographs are substandard, making identification difficult, such as the pictures of bumblebees.

Presentation is a bit inconsistent. For example, the entry for the "RUBY-TAILED WASP Chrysis ignita" is followed by "CHRYSIS ANGUSTULA". Each entry should be in a consistent format. It would be better to present as Latin name - English name (if there is one), rather than present one entry with the English name in upper case and bold, and the next entry as the Latin name in upper case and bold.

References and useful addresses is not as comprehensive as it could be.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars British Insects 7 Sep 2009
Format:Paperback
As an allotment owner and a keen gardener, I inevitability come across many insects.
Having a curious mind it is satisfying, being able to identify individual species, and more important, to recognise which are the gardeners 'enemies' and which are our friends.
To this end, I have found the 'Collins Complete Guide To British Insects to be the perfect companion. It not only identifies many, many, species, but also give one an insight into the wonderful world of nature, and the constant struggle to survive.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
By Chris TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A good step up from Collins Complete Guide - British Wildlife: A photographic guide to every common species for those with an interest in insects. This expanded volume covers more species with excellent quality photos.

The only real criticism is that the editors interest in Lepidoptera (Butterflies and moths) is clearly evident, with a large portion of the book given over to just this order. It would have been nice to have more examples of other kinds of insects!

Overall though, it's an excellent reference book for those wanting to quickly check an idea of the more common species.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Collins Complete Guide to British Insects 29 Nov 2011
By Madmum
Format:Paperback
Having tried to explain to my 8 year old granddaughter that we a) don't have poisonous ladybirds, and b) that not all stripey flies are wasps and need to be swatted, this book has proved to be a godsend. We now regularly go on bug hunts in the garden and try to identify our mini beasts with confidence.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellant identification guide 30 Jan 2011
By GemH87
Format:Paperback
I decided to purchase this book following a field experiment carried out during my PhD in entomology, where I was struggling to identify certain insects using standard keys e.t.c. On opening this book I was very pleased with the number and detail of the pictures of a wide variety of insects which many other books lack. With the good layout and structure I quickly managed to identify two of my mystery insects and I was pleased to see pictures of the smaller uninteresing insects which can often be missed out.
I think this book is a valuable resource for anybody with an interest in insects and if it does not solve your indentification problems it will certainly point you in the right direction at an excellant price.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Odd Indexing 24 July 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a nice resource, and is fairly complete. Oddly the indexing does not often use common names, you won't find "Wood wasp" in there (although it is mentioned in the text). Likewise "Marmalade fly" and "Thicknee" are missing - there are dozens of other examples. Other than that, it's good.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Considering the vast subject... 28 July 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
...this book is very well-presented. Beautiful photographs, adequate information, and a good layout. It is a bit large for an in-field identification guide, but I doubt there is an easy way round that. I highly recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Guide 18 Jan 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I bought it as a present but thought it was a comprehensive and very full guide with wonderful pictures which really would help with identification.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent.
Just the job for both the experienced entomologist, and a great book for younger natural historians on an old fashioned "nature walk".
Published 2 months ago by Nick
5.0 out of 5 stars I like this bug book
As a child I wanted an encyclopaedia on sharks but was given one on insects. I don't have that book anymore, it was a big old hardback and the pictures were all drawn. Read more
Published 3 months ago by vic897
5.0 out of 5 stars Splendid reference book on British insects
This is a very high quality book on British insects, with splendid photographs and general information on distributions and habitats frequented.
Published 5 months ago by CN
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous Book For Everyone
Love this book! I have identified so many insects since I bought this book, now an invaluable tool whilst out photographing!! Stops me being bitten and stung!!!
Published 6 months ago by miss lucy c gutteridge
5.0 out of 5 stars good buy
This book has good pictures very informative name about the insect and where found and how rare .
Got this as a present for my husband and he realy enjoys looking threw to see... Read more
Published 7 months ago by sufu
5.0 out of 5 stars bags of bugs!
,great photos of most british insects,covers a huge range of different species,from grasshoppers through all the types of bees,moths butterflies beatles dragonflies the list is... Read more
Published 7 months ago by sm kirk
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
I have gone through life and missed most of the knowledge contained within
these pages, easy to use a quality book in almost brandnew condition for a
pittance
Published 7 months ago by Mr. Brian W. Porter
5.0 out of 5 stars Very pleased as is gives good detail
I would recomend this book to my friends and it explains what you need to know on how to identify insects
Published 7 months ago by jo walker
4.0 out of 5 stars Bees could be the weakness!
I am new to investigating what insect I am looking at and I am finding this book very useful. The beetle, moth, butterfly, caterpillar sections are brilliant. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Sally
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing!
Complete?
Lack of Arachnida and Plecoptera!
Apparently, noted in another source a complete page of Ichneumonids incorrectly identified! Read more
Published 8 months ago by Brian Price
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