An artist has been criticised after posting a video on Youtube of a sculpture being created by pouring molten aluminium into a fire ant colony mound

Artist criticised for creating sculpture by pouring molten aluminium into fire ant colony mound

A Youtube video showing how the work is made has now received over 7 million views, with the artists admitting that many commentators have asked 'what if I poured aluminum in your house'

Spiders’ webs are covered with an electrically conductive glue, and they filter pollutants as well as catch insects

Power of the web: The secret of how spiders catch their prey

New research reveals that an electrical quirk sends a spider's woven silk springing towards its victims. Zander Swinburne unravels the science

Carlos Juan Finlay: Physician's 180th birthday marked with Google Doodle

The Cuban physician Carlos J Finlay has been honoured with a Google Doodle on the 180th anniversary of his birth.

Sexually frustrated fruit flies die earlier

Sexual frustration will give you a shorter and more stressful life (if you are a fruit fly)

Sexually frustrated fruit flies die earlier, new research suggests.

A Brazilian wandering spider

Arachnophobia app tackles spider phobia

Reduced to a trembling wreck by the mere sight of a spider? Never fear - a new app believes it can help

The Roboroach device costs $99

RoboRoach app encourages children to turn cockroaches into smartphone-controlled toys

The developers of a new electronic device that fits onto cockroaches, allowing their movements to be controlled by a mobile phone app, have been criticised for animal cruelty.

Steatoda nobilis or false widow spider

Amateur footballer undergoes emergency surgery after false widow spider bite in Devon

The most venomous spider in Britain has bitten an amateur footballer in Devon.

The Ir40a nerve receptor is found in the antennae of mosquitoes

Secrets of insect repellent DEET could prove decisive in the war on malaria, dengue and West Nile fever

Researchers use new screening method to find four repellents that are as powerful as substance used effectively for more than 60 years to protect people

Killer hornets: Deadly insects leave 41 dead and 1,600 injured

More than 1,600 have also been injured in attacks from the deadly insects

More sightings of the false widow spider, as Britain's 'most venomous arachnid', with orange legs and white skull markings spotted in Essex

Further sightings of the false widow spider, Britain’s most venomous arachnid, are raising fears following reports that the spider is heading north.

Fly swatting: A beginner's guide

Experts - and Independent readers - give their tips

Bites reported across London and Kent as south east sees influx of Britain's most poisonous spider

Rising temperatures are forcing false widow spiders up north

Jurassic Park theory disproved by scientists who rule dinosaur DNA cannot survive in amber

As the fourth instalment in the multi-million pound Jurassic Park series is announced, scientists have revealed that the theory behind the film that kept so many audiences captivated would not be successful in reality.

Killer insect: Asian hornets reached France in 2005 and have spread steadily

Potentially deadly predatory Asian hornets with vicious sting heading towards Britain

It is feared that vespa velutina nigrithorax, which can grow to four-times the size of a British honey bee, could attack the indigenous bee population

Record numbers of “jobless” wasps are more likely to attack us because they are drunk and aggressive, the British Red Cross has warned

Drunk wasps may attack us, warns Red Cross

First aid experts advise anyone eating outside to beware stings and keep a credit card to hand

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there