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Research on ants scoops student award

A second-year student from the University of the West Indies has been selected by the Royal Entomological Society as the second prize winner of its annual Student Award.

Jo-Anne Nina Sewlal, from Trinidad, was awarded the accolade for her article ‘Ants: Who is Using Whom?’ which explains how a variety of plants and animals including insects, arachnids and humans exploit ants for their own benefit.

The RES Student Award invites entrants to write a clear and concise article on any entomological topic that would be of interest to the general public. The competition is open to all undergraduates and postgraduates, on both full and part-time study.

In “Ants: Who is Using Whom?”, Jo-Anne details how ants are used by other living things to provide protection against predators, in exchange for rewards of food, or a home. Ants are also used by humans for medicinal and agricultural purposes.

Jo-Anne is completing a PHD in Zoology at the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad. She said: “I was once told that I write too much, and I guess the practice has paid off!”

For her efforts, Jo-Anne was awarded a cheque for £200 and recognition for her winning article with a submission to Antenna, the quarterly newsletter of the RES.

Award judge and Fellow of the RES Peter Smithers said: “Jo-Anne has written an interesting, informative and well researched article concerning the complex relationship between ants, other animal and the plants on which they live. Her enthusiasm for the subject shines through in her text”.

The overall winner of the Student Award was John Wilson from the University of Guelph, Canada, who was commended for his article ‘Biodiversity in Crisis: Butterflies get Barcodes’.

Elizabeth Rogers | alfa
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