Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Tiny Brains with Big Effects: the World of Ants and Bees

Tiny Brains with Big Effects: the World of Ants, Bees and Wasps
 
Wellingtonians will have the chance to delve into the world of insects during Professor Phil Lester’s inaugural professorial lecture at Victoria University on Tuesday 7 May.
 
Professor Lester will explore the behaviour of social insects such as ants, bees and wasps, discussing the vital pollinating role they play in our food production, as well as the damage they can cause to entire ecosystems.
 
He will demonstrate some of the incredible behaviours insects have adopted in order to survive in different situations. For example, scientists have recently discovered a new behaviour in the common wasp when it is competing for food with native ants. Picking their opponents up in their mandibles (or jaws), wasps have been seen to fly backwards and drop ants away from the disputed food resource, dealing efficiently with their competitors.
 
Professor Lester will also explain how successful insect populations can occasionally collapse and disappear, and discuss why now, more than ever, we need to manage social insects for conservation and biodiversity benefits.
 
Vice-Chancellor Professor Pat Walsh says Victoria University’s inaugural lecture series is an opportunity for professors to share insights into their specialist areas of study with family, friends, colleagues and the local community.
 
“Inaugural lectures are also an excellent way for the University to celebrate and acknowledge our valued professors,” says Professor Walsh.
 
Professor Phil Lester is based in the School of Biological Sciences at Victoria University. He is an authority on invasive insect species and is recognised as one of New Zealand’s leading insect experts.
 
He has previously received a Marsden Fund grant and Fulbright Senior Scholar Award to support his research, and received a Victoria University Research Excellence Award in 2009.
 
Last year, Professor Lester served as President of the Entomological Society of New Zealand and was also named as the 2012 recipient of the Royal Society of New Zealand’s Charles Fleming Fund, which supports senior scientists to carry out research. 
 
Inaugural lecture–Professor Phil Lester
‘Tiny brains with big effects: the ecologically dominant but fragile world of ants, bees and wasps’
Tuesday 7 May 2013, 6pm
Hunter Council Chamber, Level 2, Hunter Building, Gate 1 or 2, Kelburn Parade, Wellington.
 
RSVP by Friday 3 May. Phone 04-472 1000 or email rsvp@vuw.ac.nz with ‘Lester’ in the subject line.
 
Click on this link to view a video of wasps picking up and dropping ants: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DILNPkA9vwY.


 
ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Final Frontier: Rocket Lab And NASA Sign Commercial Space Launch Agreement

Rocket Lab has signed a Commercial Space Launch Act Agreement with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The agreement enables Rocket Lab to use NASA resources - including personnel, facilities and equipment - for launch and reentry efforts. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Wheeler Downplays Scope For ‘Large’ Rates Fall

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler says some market commentators are predicting further declines in interest rates that would only make sense for an economy in recession, although some easing is likely to be needed to maintain New Zealand’s economic growth. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha Dam: Consent Conditions Could Mean Reduced Intensity

Legal advice sought by the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council on the Ruataniwha Dam consent conditions has confirmed that farmers who sign up to take water from the dam could be required to reduce the intensity of their farming operation to meet the catchment’s strict nitrogen limit. More>>

Health And Safety: Bill Now Sees Rules Relaxed For Small Businesses

Health and safety law reform sparked by the Pike River coalmine disaster has been reported back from the industrial relations select committee with weakened requirements on small businesses to appoint health and safety representatives and committees. More>>

ALSO:

Bearing Fruit: Annual Fruit Exports Hit $2 Billion For First Time

The value of fruit exported rose 20 percent (up $330 million) for the June 2015 year when compared with the year ended June 2014. Both higher prices and a greater quantity of exports (up 9.0 percent) contributed to the overall rise. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news