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Latest Wasp Stories

Communal Living Of The Insect Kind
2011-11-17 04:20:02

The social lives of ants, wasps and bees have long been a puzzle to scientists. How did complex insect societies – colonies ruled by a queen and many workers – come to be? A new model adds to discontent with old ideas. Social insect society is divided into specialized castes that take on different roles within the nest. Most of the members of a colony — the workers — forego their own chance for reproduction and instead spend their lives raising offspring that aren't...

New Species Of Fungus Found In A Wasp Nest
2011-11-10 04:29:58

Mucor nidicola species previously unknown to science While some researchers look for new species in such exotic places as the deep sea, tropical regions, or extreme environments, a team headed by Tufts researchers turned their attention towards nests of an invasive paper wasp. What they found was a new species of fungus. Philip T. Starks, associate professor of biology at the School of Arts and Sciences at Tufts University, and doctoral student Anne A. Madden published their discovery...

Image 1 - Misleading Morphology
2011-10-27 04:35:18

3 European parasitoid wasp 'species' are seasonal forms of just 1 Three widely differing forms of European Scambus parasitoid wasps that had previously been regarded as distinct species are shown to be seasonal morphs of a single species. The collaboration involved National Museums Scotland (Mark Shaw), a private individual (Malcolm Jennings) and Imperial College London + Natural History Museum (Donald Quicke). It was published in the open access Journal of Hymenoptera Research. The...

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2011-09-14 23:01:10

New UA research has discovered that seed beetles from the desert Southwest shelter their broods from attacking parasitic wasps under a stack of dummy eggs They lead modest lives among the palo verde, mesquite and acacia trees throughout the Southwestern U.S., laying their eggs on seed pods and defending the survival of their offspring against the parasitic wasp species that attacks their eggs before their young can develop. They are the seed beetles Mimosestes amicus, living all around...

2011-08-19 06:48:00

ATLANTA, Aug. 19, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- As Americans gear up for the final days of summer with last-minute vacations and Labor Day barbeques, one tradition remains as constant as back-to-school sales - pest activity. In a recent Omnibus survey conducted by Atlanta-based pest control leader Orkin, flies (45 percent), flying and stinging insects (40 percent) and mosquitoes (39 percent) were most frequently seen in and around homes within the past month. In addition, 30 of 31 Orkin region...

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2011-07-17 07:41:57

Exceptionally preserved fossils of insect cocoons have allowed researchers in Argentina to describe how wasps played an important role in food webs devoted to consuming rotting dinosaur eggs. The research was published July 15th in the scientific journal Palaeontology. The approximately 70 million year old eggs, from gigantic titanosaur sauropod dinosaurs were discovered in 1989 in the Patagonia region of Argentina, well known for yielding fossils of sauropod dinosaur eggs and even embryonic...

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2011-04-18 09:40:00

Jupiter-like worlds around other stars push shock waves ahead of them, according to a team of UK astronomers. Just as the Earth's magnetic "bow-shock" protects us from the high-energy solar wind, these planetary shocks protect their atmospheres from their star's damaging emissions. Team member Dr Aline Vidotto of the University of St Andrews will present a new model based on observations made with the SuperWASP (Wide Angle Search for Planets) project on Monday 18 April at the National...

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2011-04-12 11:16:30

Across many groups of animals, species with bigger brains often have better cognitive abilities. But it's been unclear whether overall brain size or the size of specific brain areas is the key. New findings by neurobiologists at the University of Washington suggest that both patterns are important. The researchers found that bigger-bodied social wasps had larger brains and devoted up to three times more of their brain tissue to regions that coordinate social interactions, learning, memory and...

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2011-01-25 07:35:00

Future queen or tireless toiler? A paper wasp's destiny may lie in the antennal drumbeats of its caretaker. While feeding their colony's larvae, a paper wasp queen and other dominant females periodically beat their antennae in a rhythmic pattern against the nest chambers, a behavior known as antennal drumming. The drumming behavior is clearly audible even to human listeners and has been observed for decades, prompting numerous hypotheses about its purpose, says Robert Jeanne, a professor...

2011-01-03 21:08:44

Same Proteins Involved, but Cancer Takes Hold When Response Gets Out of Control, CCNY Biologists Report Tiny parasitoid wasps can play an important role in controlling the populations of other insect species by laying their eggs inside the larvae of these species.  A newly hatched wasp gradually eats the host alive and takes over its body.  The host insect is far from defenseless, however.  In Drosophila (fruit flies), larvae activate humoral immunity in the fat body and mount...


Latest Wasp Reference Libraries

Orchard Mason Bee, Osmia lignaria
2013-07-10 14:38:22

The orchard mason bee (Osmia lignaria), also known as the blue orchard bee, is a species of megachilid bee that is native to North America. Its range extends across the Rocky Mountains, where two subspecies are located. The nests of this species are made in natural hollows in which the bees will make separate rooms for larvae by creating walls with mud. The orchard mason bee can first be seen the early spring months, when temperatures reach about fifty-seven degrees Fahrenheit. Males leave...

Scutigera coleoptrata
2014-01-12 00:00:00

Image Caption: House Centipede, Scutigera coleoptrata. Credit: Bruce Marlin/Wikipedia  (CC BY 3.0) Scutigera coleoptrata is one of many species of house centipedes. This species is native to the Mediterranean, but it is capable of moving to other region of the world including most of Europe, South America, North America, and Asia. It is thought to have first ventured from its native range into Mexico and Guatemala, and its range has now stretched into Argentina in the south and Canada in...

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2009-01-17 15:59:33

The European Bee-eater (Merops apiaster) is a species of bird in the bee-eater family Meropidae. It is found in southern Europe and in parts of north Africa and western Asia. It is highly migratory and winters in tropical Africa, India and Sri Lanka. It is an occasional visitor north of its range and some individuals may breed in northwest Europe. It is a richly colored and slender bird, like other bee-eaters. It has brown and yellow upperparts, green wings and a black beak. It is 10.5 to...

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2009-01-17 15:43:38

The Red-bearded Bee-eater (Nyctyornis amictus) is a species of bird found in the Indo-Malayan subregion of South-east Asia. Its natural habitat is open patches of dense forest. It nests in burrows tunneled into the side of sandy banks. It does not form colonies. Like other bee-eaters, the Red-bearded Bee-eater is colorful and has a long tail. Its beak is curved downward and it has pointed wings. It is mostly green, with red coloration to the face that extends on to the throat feathers...

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2005-09-12 10:21:44

Spider wasps, also called pompilid wasps or spider-hunting wasps, are insects belonging to a diverse family named Pompilidae, of the order Hymenoptera. Spider wasps are sometimes distinct from other wasps in features such as eye structure (no notch as in Family Vespidae), legs modified for grooming, and in having a groove dividing the mesopleuron (a region of the thorax) into halves. Larvae can also be identified by physical examination. Females are often larger than the males, with...

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Word of the Day
cock-a-hoop
  • Exultant; jubilant; triumphant; on the high horse.
  • Tipsy; slightly intoxicated.
This word may come from the phrase 'to set cock on hoop,' or 'to drink festively.' Its origin otherwise is unclear. A theory, according to the Word Detective, is that it's a 'transliteration of the French phrase 'coq a huppe,' meaning a rooster displaying its crest ('huppe') in a pose of proud defiance.' Therefore, 'cock-a-hoop' would 'liken a drunken man to a boastful and aggressive rooster.'
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