Cover image for Bees of the world
Bees of the world
O'Toole, Christopher.
Personal Author:
Paperback edition.
Publication Information:
London : Blandford, 1999.
Physical Description:
192 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 24 cm
General Note:
Originally published: New York : Facts on File, c1991.
What are bees? -- The families of bees and where they live -- Background to the solitary life -- Miners -- Masons -- Leaf-cutters -- Carpenters -- Other solitary bees -- The road to sociality -- The highly social bees -- Bees and flowers -- Unlikely partners: bees and orchids -- The male of the species -- Enemies and associates.
Subject Term:
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QL563 .O87 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
QL563 .O87 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
QL563 .O87 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



You may hate their sting -- but their honey is sweet, and they do wonderful things for the environment. Find out what kinds of nests they build, how they collect and distribute pollen among plants, and the way in which natural selection has brought about many brilliant and beautiful adaptations in these insects.

Author Notes

Christopher O'Toole has curatorial responsibility for bees and wasps at the world famous Hope Entomological Collections of the University Museum in Oxford, England. As well as being a world authority on bees, he is a frequent broadcaster and has written extensively on the topic.
Anthony Raw is a British professor in the Department of Ecology of the University of Brasilia, where he is studying bee behavior in their tropical habitats

Reviews 1

Choice Review

A delightful and reasonably priced book that does an excellent job of introducing the natural history and families of bees to both highly specialized and general readers. The text is written in an engaging and entertaining fashion and contains line drawings and numerous color photographs of many species of bees, in their surroundings with their food plants. Following two brief introductory chapters giving an overview of bee biology and families of bees, chapters are devoted to bee solitary life; bee miners, masons, leaf-cutters, carpenters, and other solitary bees; the road to sociality (containing a brief overview of communal nests, quasisocial bees, semisocial bees, and subsocial and primitively eusocial bees), highly social bees, bees and flowers, bees and orchids, male bees, and bee enemies and associates. This reviewer, a biologist, would have preferred to see a bit more biology (physiology, development, ecology). This criticism notwithstanding, this book should be in the libraries of most community colleges and research universities with programs in apiculture, biology, entomology, natural history, and zoology.-S. L. Smith, Bowling Green State University



The diversity of lifestyles, behaviors, and life cycles that bees possess is astounding, and Bees of the World is a well-rounded reference to these fascinating creatures. Presenting comprehensive coverage of bee species from around the world in an engaging format, this volume will delight readers and inform them about all aspects of the life of bees. The book first answers the question: What are bees? It then goes on to discuss the different families and distribution of bees. The expert authors also describe solitary bees--miners, masons, leaf-cutters, and carpenters--as well as social bees. Readers gain insight into the intricacies of bees' lives through the authoritative text, with special coverage of bees and their special relationship with flowers. The history of association between humans and bees, especially the honey bee Apis mellifera, is also addressed. Bees of the World is fully illustrated with detailed line illustrations and stunning color photographs, making it an ideal reference source for professional naturalists and amateurs alike. Excerpted from Bees of the World by Christopher O'Toole, Anthony Raw All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. 7
Acknowledgementsp. 8
1 What Are Bees?p. 10
2 The Families of Bees and Where They Livep. 22
3 Background to the Solitary Lifep. 34
4 Minersp. 41
5 Masonsp. 61
6 Leaf-cuttersp. 77
7 Carpentersp. 83
8 Other Solitary Beesp. 91
9 The Road to Socialityp. 97
10 The Highly Social Beesp. 112
11 Bees and Flowersp. 128
12 Unlikely Partners: Bees and Orchidsp. 143
13 The Male of the Speciesp. 154
14 Enemies and Associatesp. 171
Glossaryp. 185
Guide to Further Readingp. 187
Indexp. 189