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A Hive of Industry at the University of Sussex

Published on by Dr Paul Beckett

At the entrance to the Innovation Centre car park at The University of Sussex is a large shed. The UK’s only Professor of Apiculture, Professor Francis Ratnieks will head the newly-created Laboratory of Apiculture and Social Insects at the University. Professor Ratnieks is a leading authority on honeybee biology, beekeeping and other social insects – the bees, wasps and ants that live in colonies with a queen and workers. Honeybees are the major pollinators of agricultural and wild plants, pollinating around £165m worth of crops in the UK annually. They also produce honey and wax, but their importance to scientists doesn’t end there. Professor Ratnieks says: “The honeybee is the gateway to biology – a huge range of important questions in biology, from agriculture to genetics, can be studied in this one species.”

 
 
 

About the author: Dr Paul Beckett

Dr Paul Beckett - picture

Dr Paul Beckett is one of the UK’s leading experts in Japanese knotweed and is a member of the Expert Witness Institute. He regularly provides Japanese knotweed expert witness services. He helped produce the RICS knotweed guidance for surveyors and was integral in the formation of the Property Care Association (PCA) Invasive Weed Control Group (IWCG).

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