O'Toole, C. 2002. Bumblebees. Banbury. Osmia Publications. ISBN 0 9539906 7 2.
Softback. 14x21cm. 42 pages.
This book serves as a useful general introduction to the natural history and, to some extent, taxonomy of social bees and wasps. The genetic, social and economic dynamics of the colony as a biological system are discussed. There is a chapter on using bumblebees as managed pollinators of crops and another on using artificial nests (like those supplied by Oxford Bee Company
) to encourage them in the garden.
Be warned; although there are some nice pictures of various species of bumblebee, this is not
a field-guide for use in their identification. In my view, the lack of good colour plates that could be used to identify the most common species likely to be found is a serious shortcoming of this book. For help with identifying bumblebees in the garden you will need to look elsewhere.