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Prize-winning photograph by Reading ecologist highlights crucial insect research – University of Reading

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Prize-winning photograph by Reading ecologist highlights crucial insect research

Release Date 27 August 2013

Jacob's winning picture of a bee and a spider

A PhD student from the University of Reading, Jacob Bishop, has been awarded the runner-up prize of the Student Category in the British Ecological Society's annual photographic competition.

Jacob's stunning photograph of a tiny jumping spider wrestling with a honeybee was taken during his field work this spring.

He said: "My research involves bees so I was immediately drawn to trying to capture every gory detail of the battle.

"Thankfully I had managed to capture some photographs before the spider dragged its catch out of sight. I was relieved to see that the spider had caught a relatively common honeybee and not one of our scarcer solitary bee species!"

The image provides a tongue-in-cheek example of how the UK insect pollinators are threatened and need protection.

Jacob added: "I thought the image helped to highlight the incredible diversity of insects we have here in the UK, and might even encourage more people to take a closer look at the action that may be unfolding in their gardens."

Jacob Bishop is a second year PhD student at the Centre for Agri-Environmental Research and is investigating how insect pollinators may help to minimise the crop yield losses that will be an increasing problem with climate change.

An exhibition of images from the British Ecological Society Photographic competition was shown at INTECOL, the world's largest ecological meeting, at ExCel, London, last week.


For further information and high-res images contact Pete Castle at the University of Reading press office on 0118 378 7391 or

Or contact Becky Allen, Press Officer, British Ecological Society, mob: 07949 804317, email: and Kate Rogerson, Press Officer Intern, mob: 07989 708193, email:

Notes to editors:

The University of Reading is a top 1% world university (THE World University Rankings). Its Centre for Agri-Environmental Research (CAER) is a leading centre engaged in high quality scientific research that aims to reconcile the often-conflicting demands of agricultural production and environmental protection.

Image is copyright (c) Jacob Bishop.

The British Ecological Society is the oldest ecological society in the world. Founded in 1913 by Sir Arthur Tansley, the BES is celebrating its centenary in 2013 with a series of special events designed to give everyone the chance to get involved in ecology. Anyone interested in ecology can join the BES, which through its 3,500 members champions ecological research, teaching, public engagement and policy. For further information, visit

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