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Quirks and Quarks from CBC Radio
CBC Radio's Quirks and Quarks covers the quirks of the expanding universe to the quarks within a single atom... and everything in between.
1 day ago
Fecal transplants a fountain of youth, supernova on repeat, bee dancing reveals foraging habits, tracking narwhal by their ‘fluke-prints,’ and how forgetting benefits the mind
A fecal transplant from young mice is like a ‘fountain of youth’ for old mice; How a trick of the light helps scientists spot the same supernova again and again; Dancing bees reveal that UK cities are packed with more accessible food than the countryside; Narwhals leave infrared ‘fluke-prints’ in the ocean that can be seen with aerial cameras; A memory researcher explores the science — and value — of forgetting.
Oct 8, 2021
Nobel prize winners in physics and chemistry, a super hot planet with calcium wind, burying CO2 in the deep sea, a sunscreen for the Great Barrier reef and walking water bears.
We know humans are behind climate change, thanks to this Nobel Physics laureate’s work; New Nobel laureate in chemistry reflects on how his discovery catalyzed his field; Researchers investigate an ‘ultra-hot Jupiter’ with iron rain and calcium wind; Canadian concept to pump carbon into subsea rock could sequester gigatons of CO2; Cloud-based sunscreen could help protect the Great Barrier Reef from future heat damage; How watching water bears walk could help us make small and squishy robots.
Oct 1, 2021
Indigenous archeology and unmarked graves, footprints of first peoples, laser cooked food, monkeys choke under pressure, vampire bats meet for a drink and spider learning
Indigenous archeology and the search for unmarked graves at residential schools; Ice age footprints suggest North America’s first peoples were here earlier than we thought; Monkeys respond to high pressure situations by choking, just like humans do; Set weapons on sautee, as engineers learn to cook with lasers; Vampire bats share blood meals with their besties; Do spiders learn to build better webs with experience?
Sep 28, 2021
Introducing: Unlocking the Fountain
What if there were a pill that could add decades to your life? Would you take it? For thousands of years, people have searched for elixirs that could delay death and extend human life. Could new advances in medicine finally make this a reality? From madcap medicine to cutting-edge science, the quest to unlock the fountain of youth is teeming with dreamers, skeptics and charlatans alike. More episodes are available at: hyperurl.co/unlocking
Sep 24, 2021
Bronze age town destroyed by meteor, global warming makes animals shapeshift, flying microchips, COVID vaccines for kids, and watching out for new COVID variants
Ancient Jordanian town destroyed by a meteor blast may have inspired Biblical stories, scientists say; Animals are shapeshifting in response to climate warming, and it could be costing them; Tiny flying microchips inspired by maple seeds could help monitor the environment; An inside scoop on how COVID vaccines are being tested on kids; Widespread vaccination should mean the impact of COVID variants ‘will be blunted’; What are the relative sources of light on a moonless night?
Sep 17, 2021
The election and post-COVID science, toilet-training cattle, Prehistoric leather making tools and how galactic spiral arms feed black holes.
Canadian science suffered from COVID. After the election, how do we bring it back better?; Potty training cows to solve the problem of pee pollution; Fashion backward — Archaeologists find 120,000 year old tools for making clothes; How does a black hole eat? With its spiral arms.
Sep 10, 2021
See what these Canadian researchers were doing during their summer of Science
Visiting ‘acid lakes’ in Ontario to investigate how they’re recovering from acid rain; Researchers take advantage of 'whale-palooza' gathering to study human-beluga interactions; Pesky bears complicate an investigation of a fast-moving glacier in northern BC; Researchers create aquariums inside wilderness lakes to safely study microplastic impacts.
Jul 2, 2021
Quirks & Quarks is on hiatus for the summer. We'll be back with new content Sept. 11
You can visit our archives and listen to older content at our website at cbc.ca/quirks
Jun 25, 2021
Quirks & Quarks listener question show
How much of a lake or river is actually fish pee? What's corn silk actually for? What happens when an astronaut gets gassy in a space suit? And much more..
Jun 18, 2021
Fish out of water get smarter, a star’s disappearing act, echidna’s 4 headed penis, sponges get a move on and the multi-generational impacts of DDT
Fish out of water get a brain boost; A large star that pulled a disappearing act may be a new kind of ‘blinking giant’; Echidnas have a unique 4-headed penis but only use half at a time; They're not speedy, but these seafloor sponges are on the move; Sick legacy — how DDT exposure from the past can affect many generations to come.
Jun 11, 2021
Missions to Venus, learning instant replay, wrens spectacular duet, puppies born for communication, the bubble behind the vaccines and great ape blood groups
Visiting Venus — NASA announces 2 new missions to Earth's evil twin; Your brain replays new skills at super-speed when you take breaks during learning; Wrens synchronize their brains in order to sing spectacular duets; New study shows puppies are born wired to understand and communicate with humans; Meet the Canadian scientist who paved the way for for groundbreaking mRNA COVID vaccines; Do great apes have the same blood groups as humans?
Jun 4, 2021
Shark extinction event, caffeine can’t keep you functional, the pachyderm’s proboscis, prey eat a predator, and learning about land use from Indigenous science
Sharks were almost wiped out in a mystery extinction 19 million years ago; Caffeine fail - New study shows it can keep you awake, but can’t keep you functional; How an elephant’s trunk acts as a “muscular multitool”; Normally herbivorous sea urchins turn the tables on a predatory sun star; How Indigenous science could help us with our sustainability and diversity crisis.
May 28, 2021
Salmon virus origins, municipal microbiomes, a robot arm that can feel, wolves reduce car accidents, and a new book looks at ‘Mom Genes’
Salmon CSI - A virus in BC's wild salmon came from salmon farms, research suggests; By swabbing subways researchers discover the municipal microbiome of cities worldwide; Robotic arms get a performance boost by getting touchy-feely; Wolves can reduce collisions between cars and deer, saving lives and money; ‘Mom Genes’ explores the radical biological transformations of motherhood.
May 21, 2021
Solving our sand crisis, nuclear quasicrystals, Voyager hears an interstellar hum, breathing through our intestines, a toilet revolution and dark matter in our galaxy
The world could be facing a sand crisis. A new study looks for solutions; World's first nuclear detonation forged the first human-made quasicrystal; Voyager 1 picks up the the ‘hum’ of of interstellar space; Animals can breathe through their butts and oxygen up the wazoo may work for humans too; Dethroning our old toilets. A new book looks at the environmental revolution in toilet tech; What evidence for dark matter has been found in the Milky Way?
May 14, 2021
California condor genetics, a strange star goes supernova, don’t think, just kick, patient wolves hunt beavers, an ocean of noise and why parrots mimic
California condors escaped extinction — and a genetic bottleneck; Astronomers get rare and surprising before and after shots of a star going supernova; For soccer players, the less brain they use, the better for penalty kicks; Beaver-hunting wolves have perfected a sit-and-wait strategy; An ocean of noise is having major impacts on the marine environment; Why are birds like parrots able to mimic sounds?
May 7, 2021
Sounds of a predator, horses are well-diggers, grass defuses a toxic explosive, plastic from fish waste, Animals mate with relatives, mastodon poop and pupillary variety.
Wild donkeys and horses dig wells in the desert, and create a refuge for plants and animals; Genetically modified grass can suck toxic explosives out of the ground; Animals don't seem to much care if they mate with relatives; Making the most of fish waste: how scientists transformed it into biodegradable plastic; Digging into 75,000 year old mastodon dung to learn about ancient Nova Scotia; Why do some animals have slit shaped pupils?
Apr 30, 2021
Lightning cleans the atmosphere, a 142 year - and counting - experiment, sea turtles ‘lost years’ found, finding the Mother Tree and why we cry
Scientists shocked to discover how much lightning cleans the atmosphere; Digging up 142-year-old seeds in the latest instalment in the world’s oldest experiment; Researchers solve the mystery of loggerhead turtle's lost years; A pioneering forest researcher's memoir describes 'Finding the Mother Tree'; Why do we cry when we are sad?
Apr 23, 2021
Mars helicopter, Narwhal tusks and pollution, T. Rex in their billions , airborne COVID, and what we need to know about geoengineering
How NASA built and flew the first helicopter to fly on another planet; The horn of the unicorn of the sea reveals a dirty secret about arctic pollution; Billions and billions of Tyrannosaurs walked the Earth; How long before we all understand that SARS-CoV-2 COVID is airborne?; Understanding geoengineering - why we need to investigate last resort to tackle climate change.