Pana Hema-Taylor, of Ardgowan School, asks :-

Why do bees die when they sting but wasps live after they sting?

Chris Perk, a zoology research student at the University of Otago, responded.

At the tip of a honey bee sting there are long barbs that catch in your skin. As the bee tries to fly away after stinging you, the sting apparatus with its venom glands and poison sac are torn from the bee's body. Parts of the nervous system that help pump the venom from the poison sac are also removed from the bee. This kills the bee, but it enables the poison sac to continue pumping venom into your body even after the bee has gone!

Wasps also have barbs at the end of their stinging apparatus, but their barbs are much smaller than those found in bees and they do not stick in your skin. The wasp is able to withdraw its sting from your skin without damaging its own body. Unlike the honey bee, the wasp survives and if necessary, can sting gain.