Curator of Entomology at the University of Texas at Austin. Blogger at Scientific American. Photographer down in the dirt.

Nikon Announces Winners of 2011 Small World Competition — While science journalists' attention remains focused on the Nobel prizes, another set of awards- rather diminutive in scope- were also released this morning. Nikon has announced the 2011 winners of its prestigious Small World Photomicrography Competition. The contest, now in its 37th year, received over 2,000 entries.

Hymenoptera: Bees, Wasps, and Sawflies — Hymenoptera is a diverse order of insects that contains wasps, bees, and sawflies. Many species are parasitic on other insects and are important in biological control of pests. Several groups have evolved complex social behavior, particularly in the bees and ants.

UK steel is globally insignificant and unviable: Taxpayers shouldn’t be forced to shoulder its losses — With the Port Talbot steelworks up for sale, Tata saying the value of its operations are "almost zero", and a £485m pension deficit, prospects for the plant's thousands of workers look grim. But while this is certainly a local tragedy, some perspective is needed.

Budget 2016: Cutting Corporation Tax to 17% is good news — With the EU referendum less than 100 days away and the outlook for the global economy looking somewhat gloomier than it was when he delivered his Autumn Statement in November, big changes at George Osborne's eighth Budget were never likely, and sure enough they did not materialise.

Ants - Alex Wild Photography — Eastern black carpenter ants (Camponotus pennsylvanicus). Inside their nest, workers feed, lick, and move the queen. Illinois, USA

Osborne’s latest pensions raid: Flat rate tax relief would be both irrational and unfair — Private pensions have always been a soft target for cash-hungry chancellors. Nigel Lawson made pension funds restrict the size of their surpluses under threat of losing their tax-exempt status. Gordon Brown abolished Advance Corporation Tax in the great pension raid of 1997.

Linepithema - Alex Wild Photography — Wham! A parasitic phorid fly (Pseudacteon) plants her ovipositor between the abdominal sclerites of a Linepithema oblongum worker ant to lay her egg. The oviposition takes less than a second. The hapless ant will later be consumed alive by the developing fly larva. Termas de Reyes, Jujuy, Argentina

Colobopsis - Alex Wild Photography — Colobopsis is a genus of arboreal ants with a primarily Holarctic, northern Neotropical, and Indo-Australian distribution. Many species have major workers with enlarged heads for blocking the nest entrances.

Ant Science in Brazil: A Photo Essay — If you follow Compound Eye, you are probably aware that we have been extremely boring since early May. So boring were we, in fact, that we haven't actually posted anything. We apologize for the dearth. Our absence was for good cause, though! Mrs. Myrmecos and I have been travelling through southern Brazil with only sporadic internet access.

Google tax deal: Taxing companies is after all just a stealthy way to tax people — Another day, another deluge of headlines about a multinational's tax affairs. It seems that Google's £130m payment is motivated, in part at least, by concerns over George Osborne's "diverted profits tax." He claims it's a great success, others describe the amount is "derisory ." Both miss the point spectacularly.
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Apr 27, 2016

It's easy to make fun of the internet for misinformation, but it's only going to get worse until people are willing to pay for quality.It's easy to make fun of the internet for misinformation, but it's only going to get worse until people are willing to pay for quality.

Apr 27, 2016

Getty Images is actually "the little guy" in this copyright battle with Google.…

Apr 27, 2016

When elected, Cruz will rename the White House "Whitey McHouseface" #CruzAnnouncement

Apr 27, 2016

Ted Cruz would like to add us all to his professional network on LinkedIn. #CruzAnnouncement

Apr 27, 2016

This fungus gnat is more serious about nectar than just about anyone.

Apr 27, 2016

A new sighting for me: Phileurus valgus. This cool-looking scarab came to our blacklight on Sunday night.

Apr 27, 2016

RT @EntoSpring: New genus of wasp is called Keylimepie. Well ok then. We should also call one Waspymcwaspface…

Apr 26, 2016

@AMaxEll17 No. But we aren't killing ourselves. OH WAIT.

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