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The Forgotten Pollinatorsby Stephen Buchmann
Synopses & Reviews
In The Forgotten Pollinators, Stephen L. Buchmann, one of the world's leading authorities on bees and pollination, and Gary Paul Nabhan, award-winning writer and renowned crop ecologist, explore the vital but little-appreciated relationship between plants and the animals they depend on for reproduction - bees, beetles, butterflies, hummingbirds, moths, bats, and countless other animals, some widely recognized and others almost unknown. Scenes from around the globe - examining island flora and fauna on the Galapagos, counting bees in the Panamanian rain forest, witnessing an ancient honey-hunting ritual in Malaysia - bring to life the hidden relationships between plants animals and demonstrates the ways in which human society affects and is affected by those relationships. Buchmann and Nabhan combine vignettes from the field with expository discussions of ecology, botany, and crop science to present a lively and fascinating account of the ecological and cultural context of plant-pollinator relationships. More than any other natural process, plant-pollinator relationships offer vivid examples of the connections between endangered species and threatened habitats. The authors explain how human-induced changes in pollinator populations - caused by overuse of chemical pesticides, unbridled development, and conversion of natural areas into monocultural cropland - can have a ripple effect on disparate species, ultimately leading to a "cascade of linked extinctions".
Book News Annotation:
By invoking Rachel Carson in the volume's first chapter, entitled, "Silent Springs and Fruitless Falls," Buchmann and Nabhan let readers know right away that they are pleading another endangered species case. The wonder of their writing is that they make bees, beetles, butterflies, moths, bats and other pollinators come vividly alive even as they emphasize that the destruction of their habitat will destroy them too. Readers are treated to some rare anecdotal descriptions from around the globe and careful scientific research into the delicate balance between fauna, flora, and the birds and bees.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Includes bibliographical references (p. 225-240) and index.
About the Author
Stephen L. Buchmann is research entomologist at the Carl Hayden Bee Research Center and adjunct professor at the University of Arizona. The Forgotten Pollinators is the centerpiece of a nationwide campaign sponsored by the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum designed to raise awareness of pollinators and threatened plants dependent on them.
Gary Paul Nabhan is director of science at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum and author of eight books, including "The Geography of Childhood" and "The Desert Smells Like Rain".
Table of Contents
Foreword \ Edmund O. Wilson
Introduction: Remembering the Pollinators
Chapter 1. Silent Springs and Fruitless Falls
Chapter 2. Flowers
Chapter 3. Pollinators
Chapter 4. The Perils of Matchmaking
Chapter 5. Bees in the Bestiary, Bats in the Belfry
Chapter 6. Fractured Fairy Tales
Chapter 7. Need Nectar, Will Travel
Chapter 8. Holding the Globe in Our Hands
Chapter 9. Keepers of the Flame
Chapter 10. New Bee on the Block
Chapter 11. The Little Lives Keeping Crops Fruitful
Chapter 12. Cultivating Lasting Relationships
Appendix 1: A Call for a National Policy On Pollination
Appendix 2: Pollinators of the Major Crop Plants
Appendix 3: Conservation and Research Organizations
Appendix 4: Sources
Appendix 5: Pollinator Classes for the World's Wild Flowering Plants
Appendix 6: Common Agricultural Pesticides
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