Benji Kessler is a man of many talents, he studies the behaviour of spiders, teaches mathematics to school kids, does stand-up comedy and looks great in a Spider-Man costume. Benji is currently visiting Australia from the USA where he is doing his PhD at the University of California. He was nice enough to sit down for a chat to talk about how a severe arachnophobe … Continue reading Ep 86. Science puns and stand-up comedy with Benji Kessler
Some scientists go out in to the field, collect data and conduct experiments to test their hypotheses. Other scientists conduct their experiments inside a computer. Alva Curtsdotter is a theoretical ecologist at the University of New England that studies the behaviour of animal populations across natural landscapes, but instead of spending her time surveying and measuring real world populations she runs computer simulations to see … Continue reading Ep 85. Theory vs reality, and dancing in the middle with Alva Curtsdotter
A single tweet can make all the difference, or at least it did for Andrew Katsis, who decided to get involved in the #billmeetsciencetwitter trend. Little did he know that his tweet would be seen by American television producers, who decided to fly Andrew over to LA to talk about this research on the Netflix show ‘Bill Nye Saves the World’. Andrew’s research looks at … Continue reading Ep 82. Emu farming, pregnancy tips and Bill Nye the Science Guy with Andrew Katsis
Amy Martin is a researcher at the University of Auckland that studies the incredible private lives of orchids that trick male wasps into mating with them. By depriving these wasp populations of male sperm they can actually have long term effects on the wasp populations. Amy says that this is why deceptive orchids the world over tend to use haplodiploid insects as their pollinators as … Continue reading Ep 80. Deception, maths and parental expectations with Amy Martin
Fonti Kar is a behavioural ecologist from the University of New South Wales. She studies the life history of skinks and how the conditions they are born in can affect their behaviour and development later on in life. In this interview Fonti we dive deep into what it takes to be a productive scientist and the pros and cons of forging out a career in … Continue reading Ep 78. Lizard fights and crafternoons with Fonti Kar
Wetlands, despite their name, aren’t always wet. But when the rain starts and the rivers flow theses dynamic landscapes can flourish with life. Though the question remains, how much water is enough? Freshwater ecosystems have been significantly altered by water management for human use. In particular, flow regulation has resulted in enormous declines in both the extent and health of wetlands. In 2018 Lindsey Frost … Continue reading How much water does it take to grow a duck?
How does a truffle travel? Sounds like a cheesy joke buts its a serious ecological question. Truffles are underground fungi that are dug up by animals and spread throughout forests. Their presence in the soil helps plants survive and cause soils to be turned over by animals. Fungi provide vital ecosystem functions by forming mycorrhizal associations with plants and are vital to the … Continue reading How does a truffle travel?