Brasenose, bugs and the BBC

A postgraduate Biology student at Brasenose has recently made an appearance on BBC One’s The One Show.

Chris Jeffs, who is currently studying for a PhD at Brasenose, spoke to presenter George McGavin about how parasitic wasps could help protect crops from dangerous Aphids.

Jeffs said: “They’re really important in natural communities and also particularly to us humans, as they provide a natural alternative to chemicals for controlling the pests on our crops”.

“These wasps are great things, and definitely not to be confused with the ones that bother you in the summer!”

Of his experience on the popular TV show, he said: “Filming with the BBC natural history unit for The One Show was fantastic”.

“I really got an insight into just how much preparation and effort goes into making even short clips such as this one.”

Chris’ PhD, supervised by Brasenose Biology tutor Dr Owen Lewis, looks at how the natural enemies of plants – such as fungal diseases, insect herbivores and seed eaters – can affect and actually increase the diversity of plant species we see in our ecosystems”.

“It’s so important to promote your research to audiences of all backgrounds in an interesting and accessible manner, and I think television clips such as this are a perfect means to connect public and researcher”.

“Hopefully more people will now see that many insect species are incredibly helpful to humans whether that be in pest control, pollination or even dung removal!”

Chris is currently on a field season in Panama.