More About the Author
I am a UK-based writer, journalist and editor with a longstanding interest in the relationship between art and science. I've written columns and reviews for many magazines and newspapers, including the Guardian, Independent, Daily Mail, Scientific American, New Statesman, Listener, Modern Painters, New Scientist, Vole and World Medicine. Before becoming a freelance writer and editor I was an editorial assistant at the Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain (1974-9) and a natural history desk editor for Equinox publishers in Oxford (1979-84). From 1986-2002, I was Editor of the UK's foremost poetry magazine, Poetry Review, published by the Poetry Society. I wrote a series of articles on Bio-inspiration for the Guardian (2001-3) and for the last 10 years I have been researching current biological subjects, culminating in the two books: The Gecko's Foot and Dazzled and Deceived.
Dazzled and Deceived is about mimicry in nature, art and warfare. My interest began 25 years ago when I was working as a desk editor of natural history encyclopedias. I was fascinated by butterflies that perfectly mimic leaves, leafy sea dragons indistinguishable from seaweed, harmless milk snakes that copy the red, yellow and black banding of the toxic coral snakes. I say "copy" but they don't quite manage it, as this ditty makes clear:
Red next to yellow
Kill a fellow.
Red next to black,