Books  General Natural History  Biography, Exploration & Travel 

In a Patch of Fireweed: A Biologist's Life in the Field

Biography / Memoir

By: Bernd Heinrich

194 pages, 51 line illus

Harvard University Press

Paperback | Sep 1991 | #14172 | ISBN: 0674445511
Availability: Usually dispatched within 5 days Details
NHBS Price: £18.95 $23/€21 approx

About this book

Autobiography of a scientist's life and work.

In this autobiographical reflection...[Heinrich] is intent on explaining why he became an insect physiologist and ecologist. In the process, he gives us a winning portrait of a fine scientific mind at work...There is a fine balance here between intellection and practical experience, speculation and discovery. This is a book that sends you right outdoors. -- Barry Lopez New York Times Book Review Heinrich's stated purpose is to 'tell about the natural links forged between one's life and a life in science.' He succeeds magnificently. His prose reflects Thoreau's empathy with nature and the contemporary naturalist's technical knowledge...This meticulously observed book will please scientists, but it will also delight non-scientist readers who wonder what, in this increasingly polymerized world, is truly human and truly natural. -- John Wilkes San Francisco Examiner-Chronicle In this charming volume, Heinrich combines biographical details with his economic-ecological approach to flora and fauna--embellishing the whole with precisionist pencil drawings...To be read and savored for the writing, the drawings, and the science. Kirkus Reviews [Heinrich's] memoir explains, with great charm, how he came to devote his life to such projects as measuring the temperature of wasps and swindling gullible beetles with phony dungballs...[He is] delightful company. The Atlantic


Flight into the forest; Maine; Tanganyika bird hunt; the thesis hunt; in a patch of fireweed; capitalist bees; honeybee swarms; african dung beetles; whirlgigs; caterpillar diners; pit trappers; bald-faced hunters; counting yellowjackets; hunting winter moths; life on my hill.

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Bernd Heinrich is Professor Emeritus of Biology at the University of Vermont. He has written several memoirs of his life in science and nature, including One Man's Owl, and Ravens in Winter. Bumblebee Economics was twice a nominee for the American Book Award in Science, and A Year in the Maine Woods won the 1995 Rutstrum Authors' Award for Literary Excellence.

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