Top positive review
40 people found this helpful
Worth the wait
on 8 January 2009
Following Chris's previous book, the Moths of Trigon, this new book has been eagerly anticipated, and I have not been disappointed. Most of the photos are excellent: clear, good colour definition, and being live insects, are shown in natural poses. The text is concise, giving B & F number, name and latin name, size, status, flight time and broad distribution and habitat, and any simple diagnostic feature, followed by foodplant, and finally with the photographers initials. For example, the entry for 1676 Mocha Cyclophona annularia reads "24mm Nb. May-Jun, Jul-Aug. Very local in southern England in mature maple woods. Unmistakeable moth with yellow and chocolate markings. FP Field Maple PGC". The selection of macros covered is fairly arbitrary, with photos of some species which have been recorded only once or twice i.e. Lorimer's Rustic, but there is no photo of the regular form of Map-winged Swift. The book itself, a paperback, is well produced, and easy to use, with a full index, and a list of larval foodplants.
It is particularly pleasing to see a collection of photographs of the more common micros, and I am sure this will be an invaluable aid to those of us who have trouble remembering the latin names of some of these species. In some ways although fulfilling much of what it set out to do, it could have gone one step further; there are plenty of books with photos of butterflies, and the small number of caterpillar and egg photos are of limited use, but to have had rather more micro photos would have been great - an opportunity missed.
I for one will have two copies, one for my bookshelf, and one for a quick reference guide for those micros, and would thoroughly recommend this as a very useful addition to your library.