A Scientist Who Writes Comics About the Secrets of Insect Life

Centuries ago, scientists relied on paintings and illustrations of animals to learn more about their anatomy. Today, that biology-art bond is as strong as ever. This is Carly Tribull, a PhD student studying the evolution of parasitic wasps, who uses her scientific knowledge and artistic talent to create fun… »1/30/14 9:00pm1/30/14 9:00pm

A Fossilized Scene of a Spider Attacking a Wasp, Preserved for 110 Million Years

Paleontologists have discovered beautifully preserved species trapped in amber before — but this one is extraordinary. It features a parasitic wasp that has become ensnared in a spider's web, with the owner bearing down on it for an attack. But just before the spider was about to have its meal, a drop of resin flowed… »10/09/12 2:15pm10/09/12 2:15pm

Which pop icon do you think this newly discovered parasitic wasp was named after?

Somebody at the University of Thailand must have a rather cynical impression of pop's leading diva. Behold the recently discovered parasitoid wasp, Aleiodes gaga, named in honor of Lady Gaga. As to why the researchers chose to "honor" Lady Gaga in this way is not entirely clear (they're likely seeking attention — in… »9/17/12 10:00am9/17/12 10:00am

These Amazonian ants build one of the freakiest deathtraps in the animal kingdom

The Amazonian tree known Hirtella physophora looks rather unassuming, but it is the site of several grisly spectacles. Amid its leaves and branches, an animal, a plant and a fungus conspire to create a nightmarish trap where trespassers become meals, robbers get the death penalty, and assassins are assassinated. »5/03/12 11:00am5/03/12 11:00am

Everything you always wanted to know about the social behavior of wasps

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… »1/04/12 5:58pm1/04/12 5:58pm

Paper wasps can recognize each other's faces at a glance

In terms of popularity, wasps sit somewhere between house centipedes and mosquitos in regards to universal desire for their demise — so the prospect that they can identify faces is pretty horrifying. According to new research, certain species of wasp can tell one another apart based on faces, which only convinces me… »12/01/11 4:20pm12/01/11 4:20pm

After 150 different insect stings, this entomologist became a connoisseur of pain

If you spend your life studying insects of the order hymenoptera, which includes wasps, bees and ants, you're going to get stung a few times. Justin Schmidt, entomologist at the University of Arizona, never intentionally set out to get stung by as many different species as possible, but entomologist fieldwork… »8/31/11 11:00am8/31/11 11:00am