Show-Me Bugs by Michael Reinke

February 5th, 2012

Show-Me Bugs: an uncommonly colorful guide to 50 cool bugs in Missouri (2006, Missouri Department of Conservation) is a great introduction to the diversity of insects. This guide is useful not only to residents of Missouri, but also to some extent to people interested in insects throughout the U.S. Most of the species profiled are found in many eastern states, and some of the species or closely related species live across much of the continent.

Illustrations by Steve Buchanan are outstanding. Readers may be familiar with Buchanan's work from stamps ? he has produced several nature sets for the U.S. Post Office, including Insects and Spiders, Carnivorous Plants, and Reptiles and Amphibians.

The selected insects cover a wide range of insect groups and each entry has information on habitat, food, and life cycle. Both kids and adults interested in natural history will enjoy this field guide. Wide-ranging interesting facts about life history include:

  • male scorpionflies give a dead insect to females as a gift before mating
  • adult green stinkbugs spend the winter under leaves on the ground
  • feeding by insects such as walkingsticks prompt trees to grow more leaves

Citation: Show-Me Bugs: an uncommonly colorful guide to 50 cool bugs in Missouri. 2006. Jefferson City: Missouri Department of Conservation.

Buy this book:

Find this book at a library:
Daniel Boone Regional Library, Columbia: J 595.7097 REI
Springfield ? Greene County Library District: 595.7 R
Cass County Public Library (Kansas City): J 595.709778 REI
Adair County Public Library (Kirksville): JUV 595.7097 Rei

Here's a photo from May 20, 2009, of a scorpionfly found along a shady trail in deciduous woods in mid-Missouri.