BES Member to Deliver Prize Lecture at British Science Festival

Male Stag Beetle. Copyright Deborah Harvey
Male Stag Beetle. Copyright Deborah Harvey
Dr Deborah Harvey has been invited to deliver the prestigious Charles Lyell Award Lecture at this year’s British Science Festival. Organised by the British Science Association, the British Science Festival is the largest event of its kind in Europe. This year the Festival takes place in Bradford from 10th – 15th September.

Dr Harvey, from Royal Holloway University of London, was nominated for the award by the BES for her work on stag beetles, Lucanus servus, one of the UK’s rarest but most spectacular insects. Dr Harvey has developed a novel means of monitoring the beetle, by using ginger. Finding a cheap and ubiquitous bait for beetle traps, like ginger, is important because most monitoring is done by dedicated but unfunded amateur beetle hunters. The BES featured Dr Harvey’s work in a press release earlier this year.

Using live and mounted specimens, Dr Harvey will use this year’s Charles Lyell Award lecture to give a fascinating insight into the secret world of stag beetles – which have more in common with stags than just their horns – its ecology, the challenges it faces, how people can get involved in its conservation and how her work can help understand other species that live on dead wood.

The British Science Festival’s Award Lectures offer a rare opportunity to honour five professional scientists or engineers in the early stages of their career, who show outstanding skills in communication to a non-specialist audience. The Award Lectures aim to promote open and informed discussion on issues involving science and actively encourage young scientists to explore the social aspects of their research.