Research

Bath Professor becomes president of Royal Entomological Society

Professor Stuart Reynolds

Professor Stuart Reynolds from the Department of Biology & Biochemistry assumed the role of President of the Royal Entomological Society on June 2. He will serve a presidential term of two years.

Professor Reynolds undertakes research in insect immunity - how insects defend themselves against microbial diseases. He has been at Bath since 1977 and has published more than 120 scientific papers in his career.

Founded in 1833, the Royal Entomological Society is the one of the oldest entomological societies in the world. Many eminent scientists of the past, including Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace, have been Fellows.

The society organises regular meetings for insect scientists at locations throughout the UK, as well as hosting a series of international symposia on different aspects of entomology. It publishes scientific journals and books as well as identification guides. It has Fellows and members all over the world.

Professor Reynolds said: “I am delighted to serve the Royal Entomological Society as its President. Insects are really important; they are the most numerous kinds of animals on earth and we ignore them at our peril.

“The 'bad' ones eat our food and transmit diseases, while the 'good' ones keep the 'bad' ones in check. At another level, some insects are also beautiful, and they are quite simply the major players in all terrestrial ecosystems. We simply don't know enough about them.

“About four tenths of world agricultural production is lost to pests and diseases. With current doubts over whether the world’s food supply can keep pace with a growing population, we more than ever need to understand insects and their ways.”