Wasps are among the most fascinating creatures in the insect world. Their nests are incredible architectural achievements, which they often make by manufacturing their own paper out of leaves. Many of them live in vast hives, sometimes with multiple queens, while others are loner parasites who implant their eggs into other unwary insects.

In this interview, James M. Carpenter, curator of invertebrate zoology at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, took a few minutes to tell us everything we ever wanted to know about Hymenoptera, and specifically the wasp.

This interview was conducted by Annalee Newitz, and directed and edited by Matt Toder. Many thanks to the AMNH. Be sure to watch for other videos in the ongoing Hardcore Science Interview series, and visit the AMNH to see their latest exhibitions.