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Mongabay Newscast

News and inspiration from nature’s frontline, featuring inspiring guests and deeper analysis of the global environmental issues explored every day by the Mongabay.com team. Airs every other Tuesday.
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Dec 11, 2018

On this episode, the largely untold [and very heartwarming] story of how 96 critically endangered sea turtle hatchlings survived this past summer in New York City—with help from dedicated scientists and a cozy office closet.

In July, Big Apple beachgoers spotted a Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle laying eggs on West Beach. Two of them called a 24-hour wildlife hotline to report it, which very likely saved 96 tiny, precious lives.

This was by far the farthest north a Kemp's has ever been known to nest. But it soon became clear that unusually high tides would swamp the nest, which would have meant disaster for the developing embryos, so an unusual plan was hatched to save them. 

We speak with scientists and conservationists who cared for the nest  and answer questions such as whether it's a good sign that a Kemp's Ridley came all the way to NYC to nest. 

If you enjoy this show, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, so all support helps.

We also love reviews, so please find the reviews section of the program that delivers your podcasts and tell the world about the Mongabay Newscast. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidApple Podcasts, Google PodcastsStitcherTuneIn, Spotify or wherever they get podcasts.

Nov 27, 2018

On this episode, we check in about the upcoming international climate summit (COP24, early December 2018) with top American author and climate activist Bill McKibben, to discuss its prospects and the movements that could spur the world to action on global warming: in light of recent developments he says, "I think meaningful action probably isn't going to come now at the UN," adding he does not have high hopes for specific outcomes, but that we need to look to other sources of meaningful climate action, and "happily there are some," which he is happy to share.

As an author, journalist, and activist, Bill McKibben is on the frontlines of this fight, having written the first book about climate change for the masses in the 1980s and being arrested numerous times over inaction on the issue. Listen for his personal take on movements like 350.org (which he co-founded) and new exciting ones like the Sunrise Movement on this episode of the Mongabay Newscast.

If you enjoy this show, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, so all support helps. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidApple Podcasts, Google PodcastsStitcherTuneIn, Spotify or wherever they get podcasts.

Nov 13, 2018

On this episode we share a progress report on the Half-Earth Project (an ambitious effort to set aside half the world for nature) direct from legendary conservation biologist E.O. Wilson. 

In this return visit to the podcast, Dr. Wilson discusses their effort to map the world's 6,000 bee species, his enthusiasm for the new science of understanding ecosystems, and interesting ties with the business community. Host Mike Gaworeck met Dr. Wilson at Half-Earth Project's recent event at the American Museum of Natural History which featured the launch of a new educational initiative and live discussion between Wilson, musician Paul Simon (listen to Paul Simon discuss why he supports the Half-Earth Project on a March 2017 episode of the Mongabay Newscast), and New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman. 

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, so all support helps. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidApple Podcasts, Google PodcastsStitcherTuneIn, Spotify or wherever they get podcasts.

Oct 30, 2018

In a dispatch from Antarctica’s McMurdo Station, Mongabay friend Dr. Michelle LaRue discusses her sixth deployment to the icy continent to document emperor penguin populations, a species that is an important indicator of the Southern Ocean’s health. Skype was down at the station so we spoke with her by phone about what she is looking for and what it's like to work in Antarctica. LaRue and team fly in helicopters and planes to make high-res photos of penguin colonies which allow them to verify the population size, though a general lack of favorable conditions for flying is a daily obstacle.

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, so all support helps. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidApple Podcasts, Google PodcastsStitcherTuneIn, Spotify or wherever they get podcasts.

 

Oct 18, 2018

On this episode, we discuss the global outbreak of chytrid, which is probably the largest global wildlife disease event in recorded history, with an expert on the front lines fighting its spread. Our guest is National Geographic Explorer Dr. Jonathan Kolby, who founded the Honduras Amphibian Rescue and Conservation Center to study and save sick frogs. He also plays song recordings of the amphibians he studies and shares some positive news of disease resistance in certain populations and age classes of frogs. Plus we round up recent top news.

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, so all support helps. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidApple Podcasts, Google PodcastsStitcherTuneIn, Spotify or wherever they get podcasts.

 

Oct 2, 2018

Sarah Olson is a researcher for the Wildlife Conservation Society and joins us at a moment when Ebola virus is very much in the news due to a recent outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo. A primatologist, Olson has lately been studying hammer-headed fruit bats to understand how Ebola is transmitted to apes and also humans — research which could potentially control or prevent future outbreaks of the deadly disease — beside revealing new details on the behavior of this fascinating species. Plus we round up recent top news.

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, so all support helps. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidApple Podcasts, Google PodcastsStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

Sep 18, 2018

We take a look at how the social sciences can boost conservation efforts with guest Diogo Verissimo, one of the top researchers focused on adapting marketing principles for conservation. A Fellow with the University of Oxford and the Institute for Conservation Research at the San Diego Zoo, he designs and evaluates programs that aim to change human behavior to combat issues like the illegal wildlife trade.

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, so all support helps. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidApple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

Sep 5, 2018

Dr. Thomas Lovejoy coined the term “biological diversity” in 1980 and his work since has helped establish the preservation of global biodiversity as one of the most important conservation issues of our time. We discuss this and some of the most important environmental issues we currently face and why he believes the next decade will be the last decade of real opportunity to address those issues: 

“We really...need to think about managing the entire planet as a combined physical and biological system,” he says.

Dr. Lovejoy is a conservation biologist, a Senior Fellow at the United Nations Foundation, and director of the Center for Biodiversity and Sustainability at George Mason University. In the late 1970s, he helped launch one of the longest-running landscape experiments in the Brazilian Amazon to examine the consequences of fragmentation on the integrity of tropical forests and the biodiversity they harbor.

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, and all support helps. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidApple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

Aug 21, 2018

Sir David Attenborough says the superb lyrebird has one of “the most elaborate, the most complex, the most beautiful song[s] in the world.” In this episode we explore the incredible ability these creatures have to mimic sounds in their environment, ranging from predators and possums to squeaky trees and songbirds they compete with for forest habitat. Ornithologist Anastasia Dalziell joins us to discuss her trailblazing work with lyrebirds, and she plays amazing recordings of these spellbinding songsters.

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, and everything helps. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayApple PodcastsStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

Aug 7, 2018

You might not think of beavers as remarkable, but they are actually brilliant ecosystem engineers whose dams mitigate flooding, improve water quality, and boost groundwater levels, and they also provide habitat for species like salmon, moose, and mink. Environmental journalist Ben Goldbarb joins us to discuss his fascinating new book putting a bright shine on beavers, Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter.

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, and everything helps. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

Jul 24, 2018

On this episode we explore the latest revelations about “shadow companies” and dark money associated with the palm oil sector, and how they factor into Mongabay’s ongoing investigation into the corruption fueling Indonesia’s rainforest destruction and land rights crises (plus how these factors derail democracy in this huge country). Host Mike Gaworecki speaks with guest Phil Jacobson, Mongabay's Indonesia editor. 

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, and everything helps. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

Jul 10, 2018

On this episode of the podcast we discuss the increasing use of drones by wildlife lovers, researchers, and businesses, how these uses might be stressing animals out, and how drone users can make a meaningful contribution to science while avoiding wildlife harassment.

Our guest is Alicia Amerson, a marine biologist, drone user ("pilot"), and science communicator. She tells us why it’s critical to have best practices for drones in place not only to guide hobbyists making videos of whales or birds, but especially before companies like Amazon.com deploy fleets of drones in our skies.

Episode artwork of falcon and drone courtesy of Shane Keena Photography.

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, and all donations help. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

Jun 26, 2018

Traditional indigenous knowledge and climate change is this episode's topic, with Snowchange Cooperative's Tero Mustonen: “Often in the past, science has been seen as quite [a] colonial tool by indigenous peoples,” he says. “We are trying to say that we are co-researching, and these knowledge-holders in remote communities are scientists of their own kind.” We also hear about Snowchange’s ecological restoration and solar power projects, the latter of which empower women and kids in remote indigenous communities.

If you enjoy this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep it growing. Mongabay is a nonproft media outlet, and all donations help. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

Image courtesy of Nathaniel Wilder, nathanielwilder.com.

Jun 12, 2018

In this episode, professor Anne Axel of Marshall University makes the case for a new field of bioacoustics research: soundscape phenology, the study of cyclical life events of plants and animals via sound recordings. She'll be keynoting the biennial Ecoacoustics Congress in Brisbane, Australia later this month on the topic, and gives us a preview while playing just a few of the recordings that have informed this research from the forests of Madagascar.

We'd be very glad to have your support for this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep this show growing. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

May 30, 2018

On this episode, a special report on community-based conservation and agroforestry operations known as ejidos in Mexico. Ejidos have proven to be effective at conserving forests while creating economic opportunities for the local rural communities who live and work on the land, but have also faced a threat to their own survival over the past decade as younger generations, seeing no place for themselves in the rigid structure of ejido governance, have left in large numbers. A lack of inclusion of women has also posed a challenge. But some ejidos are changing all that, and host Mike Gaworecki visited several of them and spoke with ejidatarios and youths plus outside experts.

We'd be very glad to have your support for this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep this show growing. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

May 15, 2018

Legendary oceanographer and marine biologist Sylvia Earle, often called "Her Deepness," is a National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and former chief scientist at the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). She's a fierce champion for ocean conservation in general and marine protected areas in particular. "The ocean has given us everything, life itself, now it's time to give back," she says in this wide ranging conversation with Mongabay. Despite difficult trends, she also reports being 'seriously optimistic.'

We'd be very glad to have your support for this podcast, please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep this show growing. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

Apr 30, 2018

Megan Friesen is a conservation biologist using bioacoustics technology to examine the breeding behavior of a secretive Pacific seabird called Buller’s shearwater, which breeds on the remote Poor Knights Islands, off of northern New Zealand.

In this Field Notes segment, Friesen explains why bioacoustics techniques are critical to the research she's doing with the Northern New Zealand Seabird Trust, and she plays recordings of the birds from both of the main islands where it breeds.

If you like what you hear, we'd be very glad to have you as a supporter, so please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep this show growing. Thank you!

And please invite your friends to subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or listen via Spotify.

Apr 17, 2018

On this episode we discuss the impacts of agriculture on Brazil’s Cerrado region, an incredibly biodiverse savannah supporting more than 10,000 plant species, 900 kinds of birds, and 300 different mammals. But it has long been overlooked by scientists and environmentalists alike, and as protecting the Amazon Forest became more of a priority, much agricultural production in Brazil has moved from the rainforest to the vast Cerrado. Mongabay sent two reporters there to learn about the effects of agriculture, and they join us to discuss this 'upside down' forest. 

If you like what you hear, please subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or look it up on Spotify, and tell a friend about the show.

We'd also be very glad to have you as a supporter, so please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep this show growing. Thank you!

Apr 3, 2018

On this episode we speak with James Valentine, the multiple-Grammy-winning guitarist for Maroon 5 about his work to keep illegal and unsustainable rainforest wood out of musical instruments, and efforts to make concert tours more environmentally friendly. He has been to Peru and Guatemala to see the effects of illegal logging there, and he talks with us about his motivations for stopping this destructive trade.

If you like what you hear, please subscribe via AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or Spotify and tell a friend about the show.

We'd also be very glad to have you as a supporter, so please visit www.patreon.com/mongabay to pledge any amount to keep this show growing. Thank you!

 

Mar 20, 2018

On this episode, we discuss humanity’s deep connection to water and hear sounds of one of the most ancient animal migrations on Earth, that of the Sandhill crane. Our first guest is marine biologist and sea turtle conservationist Wallace J. Nichols, the author of Blue Mind: The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected, & Better at What You Do. Then we speak with a team using bioacoustics to document the ecology and phenology of Sandhill cranes on the Platte River in the U.S. state of Nebraska, as the birds make a stopover during their annual northward migration.

We play their spellbinding recordings of this amazing scene, plus we round up the recent top environmental & conservation science news!

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And please help us improve the Mongabay Newscast by leaving a review on its page at AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or wherever you subscribe to it.

Mar 6, 2018

How effective is environmental restoration? On this episode, we seek answers to that question with Claire Wordley of Cambridge University, which has just debuted a much needed new project collecting the evidence, and examples of restoration from around the globe. We also speak with Becky Kessler, editor of Mongabay’s ongoing series that examines how well a range of other conservation efforts work, about what this project has revealed. 

Plus we round up the recent top environmental & conservation science news!

If you like what you hear, please subscribe and tell a friend about the show.

And please help us improve the Mongabay Newscast by leaving a review on its page at AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or wherever you subscribe to it.

 

Feb 19, 2018

On this episode we discuss the amazing minds and lives of animals — their memories, how even electric eels dream, the fact that some creatures like to get drunk (and why) — and we’ll hear all about Mongabay's newly launched bureau in India.

Author Sy Montgomery teamed up with her friend and fellow animal writer Elizabeth Marshall Thomas to write Tamed and Untamed: Close Encounters of the Animal Kind. Sy is the author of numerous other fascinating animal behavior titles, including "The Soul of an Octopus," which was a National Book Award finalist in the U.S.

We also speak with Sandhya Sekar, she is Programme Manager for Mongabay's newest bureau, Monbabay-India, and she shares some fascinating stories that they're already covering.

Plus we round up the recent top environmental & conservation science news!

If you like what you hear, please subscribe and tell a friend about the show.

And please help us improve the Mongabay Newscast by leaving a review on its page at AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or wherever you subscribe to it.

 

Feb 6, 2018

On this episode we dive into cutting-edge remote sensing technologies invented by Heinz Award-winner Greg Asner, the Carnegie Airborne Observatory, which his team uses to monitor ecosystems like rainforests and coral reefs. This airborne laser-guided lab can even see underwater to map reefs, find record-breaking individual rainforest trees that have escaped detection, and more.

We also listen to bioacoustic recordings that are used to analyze species richness in tropical forests with a researcher from the University of Puerto Rico, Dr. Mitch Aide.

Plus we round up the recent top environmental & conservation science news!

Please help us improve the Mongabay Newscast by leaving a review on its page at AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or wherever you subscribe to it.

And if you like what you hear, please subscribe and tell a friend about the show!

Jan 23, 2018

On today’s episode we feature a conversation with iconic Canadian scientist, author, television presenter, and activist David Suzuki.

Suzuki is a biologist who’s just as well known for his outspoken views on the need to protect nature. He is the author of more than 50 books and the host of the long-running science program The Nature of Things. He’s also the founder of the David Suzuki Foundation and the Blue Dot Movement, which aims to enshrine the right to a healthy environment in the Canadian Constitution.

Plus we round up the recent top environmental & conservation science news!

Please help us improve the Mongabay Newscast by leaving a review on its page at AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or wherever you subscribe to it.

And if you like what you hear, please subscribe and tell a friend about this show!

Jan 9, 2018

On the first episode of 2018, we speak with the author of a new book about the resilience of indigenous peoples in the face of climate change, and a researcher shares recordings of Australia's elusive night parrot.

Plus we round up the recent top environmental news!

Please help us improve the Mongabay Newscast by leaving a review on its page at AndroidGoogle PlayiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or wherever you subscribe to it.

And if you like what you hear, please subscribe and tell a friend about this podcast!

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