A Dazzle of Dragonflies
Natural History
8.5 x 11, 224 pp.
133 color photos.
Pub Date: 04/20/2005
Price:        $39.95


Published by Texas A&M University Press

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2006 AAUP Book and Jacket Show for Excellence in Design, presented by the AAUP

A Dazzle of Dragonflies

By Forrest L. Mitchell and James L. Lasswell

From fossils and folklore to life cycles and the latest in digital imaging techniques, A Dazzle of Dragonflies will take you into the far-reaching and sometimes secret world of one of our most beneficial insects. The guides are two of the most experienced and ardent fans of the “mosquitohawk,” and your journey will include encounters with poets and prehistoric giants; peeks into hidden, watery universes; side trips to garden ponds and scientific laboratories; and much more.

Pioneers in the electronic imaging of insects and creators of the award-winning website Digital Dragonflies, the authors share their spectacular scans of live dragonflies, enhanced with beautiful photographs that showcase them in their natural environment.

Imparting a lifelong passion for these remarkable creatures, the authors also ask us to join them in some hands-on activities to increase our awareness of and interaction with dragonflies–from tips on creating a dragonfly garden to instructions for catching, photographing, and scanning them.

Get ready to have your eyes opened by this true education about all things “dragonfly.”

Forrest L. Mitchell Research entomologist Forrest Mitchell has been fascinated with insects since childhood. This has translated into a career in entomology with the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station and Texas A&M University. Although the main direction of the research program is oriented toward sustainable mitigation of insect-transmitted plant diseases, there is always plenty of time for dragonflies. Forrest lives in Stephenville, Texas.James L. LasswellJames Lasswell is the director of field research for the Entomology Department of the Texas Agriculture Experiment Station in Stephenville, Texas. An avid outdoorsman, he became interested in dragonflies while a graduate student at Texas A&M University. He began photographing dragonflies, and other creatures of nature in 1994. He is an invited speaker or tour guide at a number of educational, civic, and naturalists meetings and festivals each year, where he shares his fascination with dragonflies and other aquatic life with the general public. James lives in Stephenville, Texas.

What Readers Are Saying:

“The digital scans of living dragonflies offer an unparalleled view of these beautiful insects. . . Authors Mitchell and Lasswell have assembled an enormous amount of useful and interesting information on dragonflies as well as offering practical advise for field and laboratory work”--John and Gloria Tveten, authors of Our Life with Birds: A Nature Trails Book

"The vibrant color photographs in this book are perhaps alone worth the purchase. . . hold your attention and urge you to read-or at least look-further. . . a beautiful and all-encompassing guide. . . thoroughly enjoyable."-Bristol Herald Courier

"There is plenty of good information here for anyone interested in this fascinating insect, but the real interest and impact of the book comes from the photos.  Beginning with the cover, this is a beautiful book, well-designed and generously illustrated with photograph after photograph of dragonflies and even dragonfly parts. . . You won't want to put it down!"-Judy Barrett's Homegrown

“Their enthusiasm for dragonflies is evident from the pains they go through to explain how they collect and disseminate information concerning their subject, as well as the paths their investigations have taken.”-Robert A. Behrstock, co-author of Birds of the Upper Texas Coast

". . . a beautiful book illustrated with a great selection of field photos as well as a visual smorgasbord of scanned images the authors created as part of their Digital Dragonfly Museum website. . . . This is a different kind of dragonfly book (and a very attractive one), that will appeal to a broader audience than has been courted with most books on odonata.”-Odonate List Online Review

“I predict A Dazzle of Dragonflies will be one of the best books produced by Texas authors or publishers in 2005. The book is-as the title indicates and the cover illustrates-dazzling. But it also is quite well-written and exceptionally informative.”-The Bryan-College Station Eagle

“The volume was designed to delight and inform amateur enthusiasts, and the remarkably detailed photographs do just that.”-American Scientist

“This is a passionate look at a ubiquitous group of insects.”-Booklist


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