How very far we have come in the last 100 years or so. If you haven’t thought about that fact lately, compare Anatomy of the Honey Bee by R.E. Snodgrass (1910) (or Cornell University Press, 1985), – parts of which are available at Extension.org – with the ultra-modern Bee by Rose-Lynn Fisher, with a foreword by Verlyn Klinkenborg (2010, Princeton Architectural Press).
Featuring an outstanding series of scanning electron microscope photos, Bee is a visual treat. As you can see from Fisher’s examples on her website, this is a mite’s view of a honey bee where eye hairs look like forests and pollen grains resemble boulders. It is a world Snodgrass could only dream of glimpsing.
The text that accompanies the photographs is sparse, but to the point, which is direct contrast to the text-heavy Anatomy of the Honey Bee.
Anatomy of the Honey Bee, however, still remains relevant. It covers far more than just external structures, including development and internal anatomy. Carefully labelled cut-away and exploded views make identification of individual structures much easier.
In fact, these two books complement each other nicely. A serious student of honey bees will want to look at them both ways.
You might have noticed that we’ve done a bit of spring housecleaning here at Wild About Ants. Mostly, it was because of issues on the editorial side with the old theme. The old theme was clunky to upgrade and had a few eccentricities. This one is much better.
If you have a minute, would you take a look at the background color? I tried to match the yellow in the flowers, but I’m not sure it is a very attractive color. Please let me know what you think.