Wonderful World of Wasps

  • Location: South African Museum
  • From: August 27, 2011     To: September 30, 2011
Wonderful World of Wasps
Fig wasp pollinators (Courtella species) entering Ficus modesta. Photograph by Simon van Noort

This exhibition showcases the diversity of wasps from a structural as well as a biological perspective. The species-rich insect group, Hymenoptera, which includes wasps, ants and bees, encompasses a vast range of lifestyles, from primitive plant feeding species, through to parasitoids and predators. The 5000 or so South African species play valuable roles in all ecosystems, providing important pollination services, controlling insect populations, and recycling nutrients.

Wonderful world of wasps includes over 100 photographs illustrating the spectacular diversity of form, colour and biology present in this group of ecologically and economically important insects. Three intricate interactions are featured in detail: the pollination of figs by tiny fig wasps; Africa’s only marine wasp that parasitises intertidal spider eggs; and plant modifying gall wasps with their associated suite of parasitic wasps.


Valerie Mienies
Tel: 021 481 3897
Email: vmienies@iziko.org.za

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