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Our fear and fascination with wasps set them apart from other insects. Despite their iconic form and distinctive colors, they are surrounded by myth and misunderstanding. Often portrayed in cartoon-like stereotypes bordering on sad parody, wasps have an unwelcome and undeserved reputation for aggressiveness bordering on vindictive spite. This mistrust is deep-seated in a human history that has awarded commercial and spiritual value to other insects, such as bees, but has failed to recognize any worth in wasps.Leading entomologist Richard Jones redresses the balance in this enlightening and entertaining guide to the natural and cultural history of these powerful arthropod carnivores. Jones delves into their complex nesting and colony behavior, their fascinating caste system, and their major role at the center of many food webs. Drawing on up-to-date scientific concepts and featuring many striking color illustrations, Jones pushes past the sting, showing exactly why wasps are worthy of greater understanding and appreciation.