The Naked Scientists

The Naked Scientists Forum

Author Topic: What would the world be like without wasps?  (Read 14605 times)

@ColynK

  • Guest
What would the world be like without wasps?
« on: 07/07/2011 22:01:02 »
@ColynK asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Picnics would be more bearable, but what would the world be like without wasps?

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 07/07/2011 22:01:02 by _system »


 

Offline Don_1

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 6890
  • Thanked: 7 times
  • A stupid comment for every occasion.
    • View Profile
    • Knight Light Haulage
What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #1 on: 07/07/2011 10:11:48 »
There are over 100,000 different species of wasp, but I assume the one you are concerned with the most is the Vespula Vulgaris or Yellow Jacket as known in the USA or just 'Wasp' in the UK. Boy can they be nuisance when your trying to enjoy a picnic or just a cold beer in the back garden. They just don't seem to give up, do they!

But without them, yes we would be in trouble. Almost every other species of insect pest has a wasp which predates on them and adult wasps also carry out important pollination of flowers.
 

Offline CliffordK

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 6321
  • Thanked: 3 times
  • Site Moderator
    • View Profile
What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #2 on: 08/07/2011 06:23:31 »
It is rare that I get stung by bees...  and sometimes in the past that has been because of swatting them away from my ears.  In a sense, I think yellow jackets have gotten a bad rap.

At some point, (if not already being done), humans will start selecting annoyance species, and driving them into extinction. 

Various decomposers might fall into that group.  However, things like flies, maggots, bees, and ants provide a valuable service to get rid of waste.  Imagine if dead animals, or even excrement would just pile up beside the road.

And, of course, various insects provide an important food source for birds, bats, and fish.

Even mosquitoes provide food for something, and perhaps other functions too.
 

Offline graham.d

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 2208
    • View Profile
What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #3 on: 18/07/2011 13:00:49 »
Wasps (yellow jackets) get a bad "rap" from me if they come near, usually from whatever object comes to hand. I hate the bu**ers (the is not buzzers by the way). You can't enjoy a nice pint in a pub garden in the late summer without being driven away by the things. I would really like to see a proper analysis of what use these wasps are and what would happen if they disappeared. They do predate on other insects (I saw one killing a butterfly once - it cut off its wings before finishing the thing off) but I am not sure how effective they are in this.

Mosquitoes are definitely a major food source for many birds and some bats.
 


Offline imatfaal

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 2787
  • rouge moderator
    • View Profile
What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #5 on: 19/07/2011 09:33:30 »
Those sparky tennis racquets are fab!  They really work brilliantly - better for mossies than wasps.
 

Offline CliffordK

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 6321
  • Thanked: 3 times
  • Site Moderator
    • View Profile
What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #6 on: 28/08/2011 07:27:04 »
A couple of weeks ago, I had 2 wasp nests that were dug up.  Apparently they are food for skunks.

I guess I do think of yellow jackets as a nuisance, at times.  But, for the most part, they leave me alone...  so I leave them alone.

I noticed that I have a couple of nests growing on my house.  Should I leave them alone?  I assume there are plenty of nests that I don't know about...  somewhere.  But, is there any reason to get rid of them?
 

Offline SeanB

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1118
  • Thanked: 3 times
    • View Profile
What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #7 on: 28/08/2011 18:51:45 »
If they are not near doors or windows, or where you go regularly, then leave them alone.
 

Offline Geezer

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 8328
  • "Vive la résistance!"
    • View Profile
What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #8 on: 29/08/2011 07:00:38 »
Dear Naked Scientists,

I seem to have at least one bike on my boat. What do you recommend?
 

Offline CliffordK

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 6321
  • Thanked: 3 times
  • Site Moderator
    • View Profile
What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #9 on: 29/08/2011 08:51:05 »
Dear Naked Scientists,

I seem to have at least one bike on my boat. What do you recommend?

And this is related to bees...  how?

You could always make a bicycle powered hydrofoil.

A while ago I was thinking of getting a folding bicycle for shuttling vehicles.  But, only the smallest of bikes would be suitable for carrying in the boat, and most didn't seem suitable for heading out for 5 to 10 miles or more along the road.
 

Offline Geezer

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 8328
  • "Vive la résistance!"
    • View Profile
What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #10 on: 29/08/2011 08:57:01 »
Google "wasp bike".
 

Offline CliffordK

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 6321
  • Thanked: 3 times
  • Site Moderator
    • View Profile
What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #11 on: 29/08/2011 10:14:21 »
So a bee's nest is called a bike?

You can see what happens when you put it between your legs!!! [:0] [:0]

I suppose it would depend on how big of a boat it is, and where on the boat it is located.  I'm not sure bees would take too kindly to sharing the inside of a kayak with a pair of bare legs, and of course, trapping them inside with the kayak skirt.
 

The Naked Scientists Forum

What would the world be like without wasps?
« Reply #11 on: 29/08/2011 10:14:21 »

 

SMF 2.0.10 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
SMFAds for Free Forums