Bee Books:
Wild Bees Field Study Guides, Ecology, Gardening & Conservation

I refer to a number of books when I am writing some of my articles.  Some of these are identification guides, some are conservation books, and others a combination of both.

Here's a selection of books I recommend - I have managed to write fuller reviews for some of these books, and my intention is to update this page further with more reviews. 

If you are a publisher or author, and would like me to review a book, please contact me via my Contact Page.  Please note that I whilst I will not write negative reviews, I will not include or promote a book I do not like on my website.  Thank you.

This is a really excellent book, detailing the 275 species of Britain and Ireland.  It's especially impressive to have a guide (at last!) which so comprehensively covers the solitary species. You can read my review here. Field Guide to the Bees of Great Britain and Ireland is available from Amazon UK and Amazon US.

A superb, and highly readable book, suitable for a wide range of audiences, and one of my favourite 'bee books'.  This book not only helps with identification of species, it answers common questions and many ad hoc, fascinating facts and insights.  A full review can be found on this page.

The Bees in Your Backyard: A Guide to North America's Bees from Amazon US and also from

Bumblebees Behaviour And Ecology - by Dave Goulson is an excellent conservation book, which also provides detailed information about the bumblebee life cycle, foraging behaviour etc. Please note, this is not a book providing an identification guide, and is not UK species specific - for example, it refers to scientific studies both from the UK and overseas, yet is easy to read.
Professor Goulson is a well-known 'Bee author' and academic.

A further review can be found here.

The book is available from Amazon UK  and Amazon US.

An I.D. guide to North American bumblebees - see my review here.
A handy guide complete with key, from Princeton University Press. 

Available from
Amazon US and Amazon UK.

Attracting Native Pollinators: The Xerces Society Guide to Conserving North American Bees and Butterflies and Their Habitat.
The title speaks for itself - a publication from the excelllent Xerces Society.

Get it from Amazon US

 or  Amazon UK.

Field Guide to the Bumblebees of Great Britain & Ireland - by Mike Edwards & Martin Jenner, is a very handy bumblebee identification guide, for species specific to Great Britain and Ireland. Some useful general information about bumblebees, is included, with great information to help you identify the different species.  Ideal for packing into a small rucksack and taking with you on a walk.

Available from Amazon UK and Amazon US.

Written by Will Allen.  Will has had an interesting past, serving in the Marine Corp as a chemical warfare paramedic, then gaining a Phd in Anthropology, teaching, and later co-managing an organic farm.

The War On Bugs is available from Amazon US and Amazon UK.

Bees, Wasps, and Ants: The Indispensable Role of Hymenoptera in Gardens.  A quote:
"Few insects are more important than bees, wasps, and ants. They maintain the garden’s biological balance, fertilize vegetables, fruits, and flowers, and recycle nutrients within the soil. It’s no exaggeration to say that a garden can’t be understood without an understanding of its insects."

Buy it from Amason US


Amazon UK.

Meadowland: The Private Life Of An English Field - by John Lewis- Stempel, is a wonderful book, perhaps a classic in the making within the genre of nature writing books.  It is not a conservation book, or an identification/field study guide - it's actually a beautifully written diary.  I add it here, because if you are interested in wildlife and conservation, it may be the kind of book you'll appreciate.  I have a full review of it on this page. Lewis-Stempel is an accomplished author, and it's the ideal kind of book for curling up on the sofa with - preferably on a dull or rainy day, in front of a log fire, perhaps with a cup of hot cocoa or warm soup to look forward to.

It's available from Amazon UK and from from (USA).

You can read a Q&A with the author here.

More books.....

A Wasp Builds a Nest: See Inside a Paper Wasp's Nest and Watch It Grow

With beautiful illustrations, fear can turn to fascination!

Do take a look!

Bees, Wasps, and Ants: The Indispensable Role of Hymenoptera in Gardens

It really amazes me that more noise is not made about the value of wasps in gardens!!  Yes, I know, there are times when having wasps around is not convenient, but there are things we can do about  that - see this page).

Fantastic Facts About Wasps: Illustrated Fun Learning For Kids (Volume 1)

A book for educating children with quick facts.

The Sting of the Wild

This is actually a book not just about wasps, but about why some creatures sting generally.  It even looks at the  differing severity of stings!

I do think that this kind of understanding brings a sort of respect, and counters a lot the "it's out to get me personally, I have to kill it" attitude.

Do bees sleep?
Apparently they do, but how do we know?


The importance of wild bees


5 reasons to include a wildflower area in your lawn


Bees nectar robbing


If you are interested in bee books, you may also be interested in my links about bee pollination, as well as my lists of bee plants.

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