Damselflies of Alberta: flying neon toothpicks in the grass
Damselflies of Alberta: flying neon toothpicks in the grass
Damselflies of Alberta: flying neon toothpicks in the grass
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Price: $33.40 FREE for Members
Type: eBook
Publisher: University of Alberta
Page Count: 169
Format: pdf
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0888644191
ISBN-13: 9780888644190
User Rating: 3.5000 out of 5 Stars! (2 Votes)

Damselflies of Alberta: flying neon toothpicks in the grass ebook


John Acorn ebook


“This is an intensely personal book, written by someone who observes and appreciates all aspects of nature and loves to educate anyone who will pay attention. The book treats the 22 species of zygopterans in Alberta in great detail and is without question a scholarly treatise. But it's worth having a copy just because it's a good read…How many books have you seen in which some of the species are introduced by limericks? Enough said.” Dr. Dennis Paulson, University of Puget Sound, Faculty of Biology/Slater Museum of Natural History

"…this is a fine new handbook, well written and beautifully produced….[Acorn] is a brilliant and passionate nature communicator….The book's production values are excellent and each species is illustrated with at least one beautiful colour photograph as well as colour identification illustrations in the plates at the back. Anybody interested in insects or in wetland ecology in general will welcome this fine new addition to the literature." Christine Adkins, Vancouver Natural History Society, Discovery, Vol. 34, No. 1, Spring 2005

"The first third of the volume covers damselfly biology, behaviour, morphology, and methods of study (including using field glasses) and gives details on methods of collection, preservation, labeling, and sources of information and equipment. The rest of the book provides accounts of individual species, with nice photos and distribution maps covering North America, not just Alberta, as well as user-friendly taxonomic keys. The individual species accounts offer the pleasures of engaging coverage and lots of take-away information. While Alberta species and where to find them are detailed here, many species are widespread." Dennis M. Lehmkuhl, Great Plains Research, Vol. 15, No. 2, 2005

"I have a very strong interest in entomology, but no particular interest in Odonates, save for collecting the odd one for my odonatologist colleague. This small book has served to enlighten me and further my interest; I will look at damselflies more closely now. ...[T]his small book is packed with a lot of useful information on identification, ecology and behaviour of Alberta’s damselflies, and for that reason alone would make a worthwhile addition to a naturalist’s library." Randy Lauff, Department of Biology, St. Francis Xavier University, The Canadian Field-Naturalist, Vol.119.

"An insect guide that's a good summer read? Apparently it is possible. With Damselflies of Alberta plus the beetle book that preceded it and the ladybug, dragonfly and big, snazzy moths' books to follow, U of A lecturer and author John Acorn swats away conventional approaches to entomological discussion. The result is a colourful little handbook filled with lighthearted observations. This is no ordinary science book." Westworld, June 2007 With iridescent blues and greens, damselflies are some of the most beautiful flying insects. Naturalist John Acorn describes the twenty-two species of damselflies native to Alberta. Exhaustively researched, richly illustrated and written in an accessible style, the author’s enthusiasm for these flying neon toothpicks is compelling. More than a field guide, this is a passionate investigation into one of nature’s marvels of the wetlands. “[John Acorn] is an absolutely brilliant advocate for insects and he has the scientific and literary chops to create a highly popular and very durable series.” May Berenbaum, Head, Dept. of Entomology University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign “John Acorn is unquestionably one of our finest nature communicators today: rigorous in his outlook, remarkably broad in his knowledge and interests, and of course witty, humane, and deeply considerate of both insects and those who watch, study, and enjoy them.” Robert Michael Pyle, author National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Butterflies “John has the rare knack of making the science of insects interesting and accessible to a wide array of people, from professional biologists, to school children.” Michael Majerus, Reader in Evolution University of Cambridge John Acorn, a lifelong Albertan, lives in Edmonton with his wife Dena and their two boys, Jesse and Benjamin. When John isn't chasing damselflies or other insects, and writing books about them, he can be found lecturing at the University of Alberta, serving as spokesperson for the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Drumheller, or addressing a variety of scientific and naturalist groups across North America. Damselflies of Alberta is John's thirteenth book and his second title in the Alberta Insects Series with the University of Alberta Press. The University of Alberta Press Book design by Alan Brownoff Printed in Canada $29.95 in Canada

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| 2 out of 5 Stars!


From the only review written, I was under the impression that this was a great field guide. It does have its qualities and the author is most creative with his poetic pieces on each species spotlighted, however, the book is not nearly what I had expected from a near 40 dollars (more with 3.99 for shipping and handling). What made me even more disappointed was the price on back cover of this paperback book is listed as 29.99!!!! So why the near 10 more in cost?!?!?!?!? This book, in my opinion, is hardly worth the $29.99 list price and definitely NOT $37.44!!!!! I will undoubtedly return it and shame on Amazon.com for marking up a book's price to sell it! If you are interested in damselflies, I would recommend Dennis Paulson's fine guide of Dragonflies and Damselflies of the West as a much better guide that not only covers the damselflies of Alberta but the dragonflies as well....and for a lot less cost (a little over 20 dollars for the paperback).

| 5 out of 5 Stars!


Damselflies of Alberta.

John Acorn has created a masterpiece that transcends its subject. A title like "Damselflies of Alberta" would ordinarily place a book into the category of "local interest", but Acorn has exploited this limitation to cover his subject completely. He is on a first-name basis not just with damselflies, but with the scientists who have studied them; and by showing that a substantial number of substantial minds have devoted a substantial part of their intellectual lives to damselflies, Acorn teaches us what is important. Not who is President of General Motors, or how much money the movie stars make - but nature. Just nature.

The photographs are unbelievable in their clarity and beauty, and in their instructive value. The paintings illustrating both sexes of every species of damselflies in Alberta would be a lesson for any author of a field guide.

Acorn describes the fantastic mating process of the damselflies, and describes a species where the male hauls the female out of the water, pulling her free of the surface tension after she has laid her (and, now, his) eggs on plant stems beneath the surface. He describes the primitive flight anatomy of the damselflies. There are limericks about many species. Everything about the book shows the intrinsic worth of life and living things.

Every page lifts this beautiful book beyond the limits of damselflies and Alberta, making it really a universal example of what might be done with every genus, and every locality on Earth. All are fascinating to anyone inclined to take the time to look, and all are important in a way that transcends "biological indicators" or possible medicines. They are the stuff of life. Read this book, and read Acorns "Tiger Beetles of Alberta". In their pristine humanity, they are an example for the whole world.

-William L. Abler

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