Cover: Desert Navigator: The Journey of an Ant, from Harvard University PressCover: Desert Navigator in HARDCOVER

Desert Navigator

The Journey of an Ant

Add to Cart

Product Details


$62.00 • £49.95 • €56.00

ISBN 9780674045880

Publication Date: 02/04/2020


400 pages

18 color photos, 153 color illus.

Belknap Press


This sumptuously produced book is a triumph both of natural history and of science… Understanding how this wonderful eusocial insect can accomplish its apparently miraculous feats of navigation has required imagination, intelligence and decades of disciplined application. Here, in one place, we can at last savor the full glory of this remarkable achievement.—William A. Foster, Nature

[A] grand book… You will end the book as a fan of Cataglyphis.—Alun Anderson, New Scientist

This title joins what is becoming an illustrious line-up of in-depth books on ants published by Harvard University Press. I praise them unreservedly for the lavish production values they have heaped upon it. Desert Navigator is a myrmecological masterpiece and a fitting milestone in Wehner’s long and successful research career. If you have any interest in ants, insect behavior, or animal navigation you absolutely do not want to skip this astonishing book.Inquisitive Biologist

Beautifully written and gorgeously illustrated…a sumptuous and highly personal account of how [Wehner] and his many collaborators unravelled the navigational ‘toolkit’ of his beloved ‘cataglyphs.’ …A scientific tour de force, and a work of exceptional scholarship… Will certainly become a go-to bible for everyone in the field of animal navigation.—Eric Warrant, Quarterly Review of Biology

Through a lively and lucid narrative, Desert Navigator offers a firsthand look at the extraordinary skills of these charismatic desert dwellers.Southeastern Naturalist

Rüdiger Wehner’s Desert Navigator is destined to be a classic in entomology and behavioral biology. It is through an extraordinary series of observations and experiments that we have the first effective look into the mind of ants.—Edward O. Wilson, University Professor Emeritus, Harvard University

Wehner’s research has been highly influential in human spatial cognition, and we are lucky to have this rich and fascinating account.—Steven Pinker, author of How the Mind Works

This book is a masterpiece par excellence! Superb science, eloquently and engagingly written, and beautifully illustrated.—Bert Hölldobler, Foundation Professor of Life Sciences and Regent’s Professor, Arizona State University

Rarely do scientists write such broad and beautiful syntheses. The quality of the scholarship and the writing found in this book is truly outstanding. Indeed, it is a breathtaking piece of work.—Thomas D. Seeley, Horace White Professor in Biology, Cornell University

This is a marvelous book that no one could have written but Rüdiger Wehner. It is simply excellent.—Alexander Borst, Director, Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology, Martinsried

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

Jacket: Liner Notes for the Revolution: The Intellectual Life of Black Feminist Sound, by Daphne A. Brooks, from Harvard University Press

“Everything I Wanted”: Black Women Listeners and the High Fidelity Culture of Taste-Making

Daphne A. Brooks, author of Liner Notes for the Revolution: The Intellectual Life of Black Feminist Sound, praises Hulu’s High Fidelity series, whose main characters are creative, intelligent Black women who are passionate about music and confident in their tastes and opinions. Where are the other shows like it?