The Modern Bestiary: A Curated Collection of Wondrous Wildlife

The Modern Bestiary: A Curated Collection of Wondrous Wildlife cover

The Modern Bestiary: A Curated Collection of Wondrous Wildlife

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A quirky collection of Earth’s most compelling animals who give mythical creatures a run for their money

The Modern Bestiary: A Curated Collection of Wondrous Wildlife mirrors the medieval tradition of an encyclopedia of incredible beasts, only this charming book with ornamental illustrations features 100 real animals who are stranger than fiction. Organized by the elements Earth, Water, and Air, the book introduces both unfamiliar creatures, like deep-sea harp sponges who catch prey in their barbs and digest them whole, as well as ones that have made headlines, such as cicadas who emerge from the ground in noisy broods every thirteen or seventeen years. Step right up and meet these delightful, unbelievable, and deliciously horrific animals, including:
The endearing:

  • same-sex albatross mothers who raise chicks together
  • tarantulas who keep frogs as pets
  • zebra finches who sing to their eggs to warn them of hot weather

  • The ruthless:
  • flukes who manipulate their host into getting eaten by a final host
  • horned lizards who squirt blood through their eyes to distract predators
  • southern grasshopper mice who harness scorpion venom as a painkiller
    And the just plain weird:
  • antechinuses who mate themselves to death
  • pearlfish who live, fight, and mate in sea cucumber butts
  • immortal jellyfish who reverse their aging process when stressed
    Funny, entertaining, and illuminating, The Modern Bestiary is a book for anyone who wants to become more familiar with the natural world and all its astounding creatures.

    JOANNA BAGNIEWSKA, a PhD in zoology from the University of Oxford, is a zoologist and science communicator, working as senior lecturer in Environmental Sciences at Brunel University London and a public engagement officer at the University of Oxford. She has studied a range of species, including wombats, mole-rats, jackals, and mink. Her academic interests include conservation biology, behavioral ecology, and the intersection of technology and zoology. She has collaborated with the Discovery Channel, won science communication competitions, and performed science stand-up comedy.

    JENNIFER N. R. SMITH is an award-winning illustrator, visual artist, and director of WonderTheory Studio. In 2020, she completed her training in Medical Illustration with the Medical Artists Education Trust, receiving a distinction for her work, and became a fully certified member of the Medical Artist's Association.

    ISBN: 9781588347305

    ISBN-10: 9781588347305

    Publisher: Smithsonian Books

    Publication Date: 09/27/2022 - 12:00am

    On Sale: 09/27/2022 - 12:00am

    Pages: 256

    Language: English


    Nature / Animals / Wildlife

    Science / Life Sciences / Zoology / Ethology (Animal Behavior)

    Nature / Reference