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The Prince of Wales marks National Insect Week with school children in the gardens at Clarence House

22nd June 2012

The Prince of Wales meets pupils from Wolsey Junior School, in Croydon, Casey Champion and Kayleigh Henry (right) as they take part in a 'bioblitz' of the gardens at Clarence House, in central London, as part of National Insect Week.

The Prince of Wales meets pupils from Wolsey Junior School, in Croydon, Casey Champion and Kayleigh Henry (right) as they take part in a 'bioblitz' of the gardens at Clarence House, in central London, as part of National Insect Week.

The Prince of Wales went bug-hunting in his back garden with an entomologist from York University to catch some insects today.

Armed with a net, The Prince used the "sweep and flick" technique to snare a host of tiny creatures in the grounds of his London home, Clarence House.

Entomologist Dr Luke Tilley put the Prince through his paces and watched as he swept the small net over a patch of lawn that had not been cut for more than a week.

He made The Prince laugh when he gestured at the net and said: "A lot of entomologists put it on their heads to stop the insects escaping."

At the bottom of the trap, The Prince was shown a robber fly, which lies in wait for its prey, a parasitic wasp and a more benign oak bush cricket.

The Prince had ventured into his organic garden to launch National Insect Week, 25th June to 1st July, which aims to encourage the public to learn more about the insects in their gardens.

He was joined by a group of children from Wolsey Junior School in New Addington, Croydon, south London, who had been invited to go on a bug hunt at the royal residence.

During the event, The Prince chatted to some of the school children who were collecting rosemary leaf beetles from his lavender plants.

National Insect Week is organised by the Royal Entomological Society and will see scores of events held across the UK, from bug hunts and bio-blitzes to minibeast safaris and moth walks.

Dr Tilley, who is National Insect Week co-ordinator, said: "We wanted to come here to show the diversity of insect species. People realise it's a rather large garden but anybody can go into their garden and go on an insect safari. They won't find wild animals but a range of insects."

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The Prince of Wales marks National Insect Week with school children at Clarence House