Australia’s Incredible Insects . . . the book

By Alfonsina Arriaga-Jimenez

For insect and crawling creature lovers, the book “Australia’s Incredible Insects” by Jessa Thurman aims to introduce readers to entomology.

If there is a child at home interested in insects, or for the entomologist in us all, this book first introduces what makes an insect, how they’re classified, and how they grow.

Then, we can dive into 10 chapters covering different groups of insects as citizen scientists might encounter them. Over 250 species are illustrated with macrophotography, allowing us to delve into the details of each insect photographed. Most of these photographs were taken by Jessa, along with images of colleagues, entomologists, citizen scientists, and insect enthusiasts.

All the species in this book are unique to Australia, invasive, rare, bizarre, and economically important. In addition to descriptions of insects, they include maps with information on where to find them and several very interesting facts… Do you know stick insects can easily drop their legs when under threat?

This book also has lessons on the importance of entomology, with information on insect ecology, biological control, and pollination.

With an estimated 200,000 species of insects in Australia, we have only named and know approximately 30%. This book also highlights the gaps in our knowledge of insect ecology and some species descriptions.

Throughout the book, scientific names serve as a stepping stone for getting to know different groups of insects from an order, family, genus, or species level.

The target age for this book is 7-13, but the images in the book open it to a younger audience, while the scientific content makes it interesting for entomologists of any age.

As mentioned by Jessa, “The best compliment I’ve had on this book has been from adult entomologists who confess that they wish this book was around when they were growing up.”

If you want to know more about the heaviest moth in the world, the nesting behaviour of the Teddy bear bee, or what else dung beetles feed on besides poo, do not hesitate to get this book.

Links to order it online: