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The Sand Wasps: Natural History and Behaviour


By: Howard E Evans and Kevin M O'Neill

340 pages, 18 line illus, 21 tabs

Harvard University Press

Hardback | Jun 2007 | #164282 | ISBN-13: 9780674024625
Availability: Usually dispatched within 1-2 weeks Details
NHBS Price: £48.95 $60/€55 approx

About this book

Providing coverage of sand-wasp tribes, this work offers a tribe-by-tribe, species by species review of studies of the Bembicinae. It is intended for those working on solitary wasps and serves as a useful reference for scientists interested in insect behavioural evolution.

Howard Evans was a brilliant ethologist and systematist for whom the joy of science included lying on his belly in some remote location, digging out and diagramming a wasp's nest. During his career, Evans described over 900 species and authored more than a dozen books, both technical and popular, on a wide range of entomological and natural history subjects. Upon his death in 2002, he left behind an unfinished manuscript, intended as an update (though not a revision) of his classic 1966 work, The Comparative Ethology and Evolution of the Sand Wasps.

Kevin O'Neill, Evans's former student and coauthor, has completed and enlarged Evans's manuscript, to provide coverage of all sand-wasp tribes in Evan's earlier book. The result is a tribe-by-tribe, species by species review of studies of the Bembicinae that have appeared over the last four decades. The Sand Wasps: Natural History and Behavior already has been hailed by specialists as a new bible for those working on solitary wasps and an essential reference for scientists more broadly interested in insect behavioral evolution.

This book will be an essential reference for any wasp researcher, beginning or established, as well as an indispensable library holding...The volume summarizes a large literature that would be difficult for any single investigator to assemble, given the many obscure, scattered sources cited and the diversity of languages translated...Given the remarkable expansion of knowledge described in this work, one wonders what the next 40 years of sand wasp research will reveal. -- Joseph R. Coelho Quarterly Review of Biology 20071201


Foreword by Mary Alice Evans Preface 1. Introduction A Sand Wasp Sojourn Sand Wasp Natural History'/'Sand Wasp Science Sand Wasp Classification: A Short Course Biology of the Bembicinae: A Primer 2. Cool Wasps of the Alyssontini Alysson Overview of the Tribe Alyssontini 3. Cicada and Hopper Hunters of the Gorytini Clitemnestra Exeirus Sphecius Tanyoprymnus Ammatomus Argogorytes Harpactus Trichogorytes Austrogorytes Gorytes Pseudoplisus Lestiphorus Liogorytes Hoplisoides Sagenista Overview of the Tribe Gorytini 4. Brood Parasites of the Nyssonini Nysson Acanthostethus Zanysson Overview of the Tribe Nyssonini 5. Stizini: A Mixed Tribe of Hopper Hunters and Brood Parasites Stizus Stizoides Bembecinus 6. Bembicini: The Diverse New World Genera Bicyrtes Microbembex Hemidula Rubrica Selman Stictia Editha Trichostictia Zyzzyx Stictiella Microstictia Glenostictia Xerostictia Steniolia 7. Bembicini: The Cosmopolitan Genus Bembix Nearctic Bembix Neotropical Bembix Palearctic Bembix Oriental Bembix Afrotropical Bembix Australasian Bembix Overview of Bembix 8. Comparative Ethology of Sand Wasps Habitat Nesting Substrate Nest Dispersion: Causes and Consequences Interspecific Nesting Associations Nest Construction Orientation and Homing Oviposition and Provisioning Estimates of Lifetime Reproductive Success Prey Type Measuring Prey Diversity Hunting and Prey Paralysis Prey Carriage Feeding by Adults Brood Parasitic Bembicinae Natural Enemies Male Behavior Sleeping Sand Wasp Conservation Appendix: Research Wish List References Index

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Howard E. Evans was Professor Emeritus of Entomology, Colorado State University. From 1960 to 1973, he was at Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology. Kevin M. O'Neill is Professor of Entomology, Montana State University.

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