"Insects get a bum rap." So says world-renowned entomologist Gilbert Waldbauer, whose enthusiasm and engrossing writing on the subject of insects have been praised by the New York Times Book Review, the Times Literary Supplement, and many other prestigious publications. In this fascinating, beautifully illustrated book, Dr. Waldbauer explains that the "bum rap" is mainly due to the small percentage of bugs that are a nuisance or harmful to humanity, the pests that make up less than 2 percent of all insects. He profiles twenty such "troublesome bugs," showing how the study of these creatures has led scientists to many basic discoveries that have enhanced our understanding of life. The reader learns how an American entomologist was awarded France’s gold medal of honor for rescuing the French wine industry from destruction by the aphid-like "grape phylloxera"; how the World Health Organization almost completely eradicated malaria through the use of DDT before the insect adapted to the insecticide and became resistant; how some insects disguise themselves to avoid detection; how others survive the subzero temperatures of winter; why some flies have a uterus and a mammary gland; and many more strange and tantalizing true tales about these wonderful, troublesome "pests"—pests that have taught us vital lessons about survival, nature, and the environment. A natural storyteller, Dr. Waldbauer has written a bug book that you won’t be able to put down. Whether you relish every story from cover to cover or thumb through to find your "favorite," most resourceful insects, you’ll come away with a new appreciation for the marvelous tiny creatures that are essential to the web of life.