Wasps! HUH! What are they good for? Absolutely…loads, actually. This week I’m speaking to nationally acclaimed entomologist and author of the book ‘Wasp’, Richard Bugman Jones, about a species of wildlife that may not spring to mind as one of your immediate favourites. Wasps, yellow jackets, jaspers, stripy bastards…whatever you call these members of the insect world and whether you love them or loathe them, you will certainly learn lots about them as Richard explains their life cycles and the role they play in ecosystems. If you’re not convinced to become a full-blown wasp lover by the end of the episode, I suspect you will at least have a grudging respect for these resilient creatures.
N.B. From Richard: Contrary to stated in the interview, fertilised eggs become diploid females, but unfertilised haploid eggs become male.
About Richard Jones:
Richard writes about insects, wildlife and the environment for a number of publications such as Gardener’s World and BBC Wildlife magazines, The Guardian and The Sunday times. He guests on programmes such as Radio 4’s Home Planet and Natural Histories, plus is the author of many books, full list below. He is a fellow of the Royal Entomological Society and of the Linneaen Society of London. He’s past president of the British Entomological and Natural History Society.
What we talk about:
-The number of species of wasps plus which wasps you’re most likely to find in your garden
– The life cycle of a wasp
– A look at a typical nest
– What stings worse, a wasp, bee or hornet?
– Invasive species
Richard Jones’s website: www.bugmanjones.com
Books by Richard Jones
Wasp – Reaktion Books, 2019
Beetles – Collins New Naturalists Series, 2018
Call of Nature: The Secret Life of Dung – Pelagic Publishing, 2017
House Guests, House Pests – Bloomsbury Publishing, 2016
Nano Nature – Collins, 2008
Mosquito – Reaktion Books, 2012
The Little Book of Nits – A & C Black Publishers, 2012
Extreme Insects – HarperCollins, 2010