PHILIP HOWSE OBE, PHD, FRES
My most recent publication
"Seeing Butterflies, New Perspectives on
Colour Patterns and Mimicry" (Papadakis 2014)
is an attempt to explain, for the generalreader, the meaning of the colour patterns
and images on the wings of butterflies and moths. This is based on a new theory of mimicry, Satyric Mimicry, which is slowly gaining credence amongst scientists, and helps to explain much about the evolution. This book, although very well-reviewed and with good sales is now out of print. The Royal Entomological Society has some stock and I have some at a heavily discounted price (contact P.E.Howse@soton.ac.uk)
A few comments from reviewers on this and previous books (Butterflies, Messages from Psyche, and
Giant Silmoths (with co-author Kirby Wolfe), all published by Papadakis, UK
Simon Barnes. The Times
The most visually exciting book of the year … Howse has put together a teasing and brilliant treat; a piece of work that is designed to dazzle and boggle and bewilder
Antenna (Royal Entomological Soc. Journal):
‘Butterflies, Messages from Psyche’ is fascinating, enthralling…we are taken on an odyssey of epic proportions….Philip Howse’s book is not to be missed.
Michael McCarthy (The Independent):
He [Howse] is on to something new and remarkable….it’s the most fascinating butterfly book I’ve ever read. (Full review in Addendum 2)
Prof Jeremy Thomas OBE: (Preface to ‘Seeing Butterflies’ - see full appraisal below)
Many hundreds of books about insects are published each year, but it is only once every decade or so that one arrives that takes the breath away.
Woodland Trust: I was so enthralled by the superb photographs of butterflies and moths that I kept turning the pages treating the volume initially as a picture book,…I rapidly became even more captivated by the text. Philip Howse has the ability to express his ‘New Perspectives on Colour, Patterns and Mimicry’ in a fluid, eloquent but straightforward manner making his theories immediately accessible to a very wide audience.
of butterflies,moths and other insects.
My current projects are
1) Bee Tiger: the Death's Head Hawkmoth through tyhe Looking-Glass.- how the moth is seen in folklrore,
in literature and poetry, and differently perceived by scientists, birds, bees and bats.
This book, with a Foreword by Simon Barnes, will be published by Brambleby Books
in April 2020, with a launch at the Linnean Soc.
2) "The Rev. Arthur Miles Moss, 'Vicar of the Amason'. In the steps of Alfred Russel Wallace and Henry Bates" A biography of Moss who was a talented butterfly expert, artist, and musician and composer who had the whole of the Amazon basin as his parish in the first half of the 20th century. A 70 000 word draft has been completed with numerous illustrations. Negotiations with prospective publishers are underway (December 2019)
3) The History of Red Admirals. There are many species of red admiral, differing mainly in the red stripe patterns on the wings. The stripes allow them to mimic features of other animals - including the now extinct Moa birds of New Zealand. The explanation of the puzzling distribution anf evolution of the Canarian and Hawaiian red admirals.
4) Butterfly Masquarades. Building on the theories presented in Seeing Butterflies, this text is again aimed at the
general public and young naturaists. The aim is to present some incredible examples of Lepidopteran mimicry - of snakes, spiders, birds, reptiles, flowers, etc. that can be found in the tropical faunas, and in Britain and Europe.