Ladybirds are probably the best known predators of aphids and coccids in the world, though this greatly underestimates the diversity of their biology. Maximising their impact on their prey is an important element in modern conservation biological control of indigenous natural enemies in contrast to the classical approach of releasing alien species.
Ivo Hodek is one of the most internationally respected experts on coccinellids who has researched these insects for his entire career. He has now brought together 14 scientists of international standing to author 12 chapters, making this book the definitive treatment of coccinellid biology and ecology.
This volume covers the rapid scientific developments of recent years in the understanding of coccinellid phylogeny, the semiochemicals influencing their behaviour and of molecular genetics. Recent insights in relation to intraguild predation and the assessment of the predatory impact of coccinellids are also covered.
Other special features of the volume are the extensive references covering the literature from both East and West and a taxonomic glossary of the up-to-date nomenclature for species of coccinellids as well as of other organisms mentioned in the text.
While aimed at researchers, university teachers and agricultural entomologists, the book is readable and appropriate for others who just have a liking for these interesting and attractive insects.
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Ivo Hodek has worked on Coccinellidae for over 50 years with most of his career spent at the Institute of Entomology, Biology Centre, Czech Academy of Sciences. Here he was Head of the Ecophysiology Laboratory (1990-1998), and now holds an Emeritus Scientist position there. He has also researched and taught in The Netherlands, France and Japan. He was awarded the J.E. Purkinje Medal of the Czech Academy of Sciences in 2000. In 1965, he founded the "Ecology of Aphidophaga" series of symposia, and since 1985 has been the Editor of the European Journal of Entomology.
Alois Honek has taught insect ecology since 1972, and since 1972 has been Senior Research Scientist, Crop Research Institute,Prague-Ruzyne, specializing in invertebrate and plant ecology with many research studies on Coccinellidae. He has also had periods of research in Russia and France.
After a period of research at Imperial College, London, Helmut van Emden was appointed to the Department of Horticulture at Reading University where he was appointed Professor in 1976 and Head of the Department from 1986-1999. He is currently Emeritus Professor in the School of Biological Sciences. His research has focused on aphids, particularly host plant resistance and biological control. He has conducted several research projects in the tropics and has held visiting appointments at the Universities of California and Queensland. He received the Karl Escherisch Medal of the German General and Applied Entomological Society in 1993.Review:
“The style in which this book is written encourages a response, and invites readers to draw their own conclusions. The inclusion of the final chapter (Chapter 12, Recent progress and possible future trends in the study of Coccinellidae) is particularly welcome. Coccinellid research is a dynamic field and the authors are emphatic in their hope that the information presented in this text will provide inspiration for further research into the specific biology and ecology of these beetles. For me, reading this book has stimulated a great deal of thought.” (Austral Ecology, 1 October 2013)
“This is a very well illustrated and authoritative account, with an excellent set of authors and a very full range of topics . . . Overall this is a rich mine of information and full of important and fascinating detail and it has much to be admired.” (British Ecological Society Bulletin, 1 August 2013)
“In summary, this is a comprehensive, well-written, very thoroughly referenced and clearly laid out book . . . The authors and three editors are congratulated for producing what will no doubt be the seminal work on the Coccinellidae for years to come.” (Journal of Insect Conservation, 15 August 2012)
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