The Inside Out of Flies

£14.99 £12.95

The Inside Out of Flies Author: Format: Hardback First Published: Published By: The Natural History Museum Illustrations and other contents: Colour throughout Language: English ISBN: 9780565094898 Categories: , , ,

The Inside Out of Flies is a look under the bonnet at the astonishing mechanics of fly anatomy. Erica McAlister reveals the engineering miracles embodied in different species of fly and some of the fascinating implications they hold for human technology. Discover the physics of the mysterious ‘scuba diving fly’, marvel at the venomous horsefly larvae which preys on frogs and glimpse the golden ratio in these creatures’ spiral flight patterns. McAlister touches on the emerging field of biomimetics – the study of evolutionary adaptations to devise new technology – and anticipates everything from medical needles based on the mosquito’s proboscis to hearing aids inspired by Ormia ochracea, a tiny fly with ears on its thorax. At every juncture she uncovers unique and surprising science lessons encapsulated in the form and function of the humble fly.

Weight0.5 kg

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''Flies are not filthy... they are always cleaning themselves,'' notes entomologist Erica McAlister's caption for a photo of a fly maintaining its antennae - one of many eye-popping images in her erudite, irresistible natural history of the insects. She agrees with naturalist Pliny, who wrote two millennia ago that insects display nature's ''exhaustless ingenuity''. - Nature; 'Not only is her subject matter engrossing and outlandish, but McAlister is also enthusiastic and witty... McAlister is an inspired spokeswoman for dipterology and entomology more generally, combining a heartfelt sense of wonder at the small things around us with a knack for popularizing science. The Inside Out of Flies, together with its predecessor The Secret Life of Flies are must-read books for anyone interested in insects.' - The Inquisitive Biologist; 'Her adoration for flies is utterly infectious and her accessible accounts of cutting-edge research are interspersed with amusing anecdotes that will be sure to induce a giggle.' BBC Wildlife

Author Biography

Entomologist Erica McAlister is a Senior curator of diptera at the Natural History Museum, London. Not just fascinated by studying and naming the little things, Erica has long been intrigued by how they do things from, often inspired by the antics that she has observed in the field, both on far flung Topical islands and in her own 'island' garden in urban London. Erica has studied in Dominica, Australia and Costa Rica and her work with diptera has taken her all around the world. She was also a presenter on the popular BBC Radio 4 series Who's the Pest?