The Vulgar Wasp: The Story of a Ruthless Invader and Ingenious Predator
In this book, entomologist Phil Lester describes the many fascinating and lesser-known sides of the common wasp. He asks: how can we manage wasps? Can we ever learn to live with them? What can they teach us about the challenges we face for pest control? With warmth, wit and intelligence, The Vulgar Wasp tells the story of the common wasp and its impact on us and our biodiversity.
Phil Lester is a Professor in Ecology and Entomology at Victoria University in Wellington, New Zealand. He has published over 125 articles on invasive ants, wasps and other insects in journals that include Biology Letters, Ecology, and Proceedings of the Royal Society. Phil sits on the editorial boards of several journals, including Biological Invasions. He has won Fulbright and Royal Society Te Apārangi James Cook Research Fellowships. Phil was born in 1969 in Palmerston, Otago.
Phil leads a BioHeritage programme on investigating Novel pest control technologies that aims to develop state-of-the-art technologies to combat wasps. Technology development will be complemented by two cross-cutting research strands: (1) development of an eradication strategy for wasps, utilising statistical methods to evaluate current and emerging control tools with a view to achieving eradication; and (2) an assessment of public perceptions and perspectives on the use of novel pest control strategies, in order to account for any strongly held concerns that might prevent adoption of new pest control tools. The views of Māori will be given particular consideration, given their status as tangata whenua with a long and intimate association with indigenous flora and fauna.