Quirks & Quarkswith Bob McDonald

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May 19, 2018 - Psychadelic science, understanding Kilauea up close, hippo poop kills fish

Also pain enables flesh eating bacteria, green blooded lizards and genes for ethnicity?
Bob McDonald's blog

Protected areas need to be truly protected

A new study suggests many wildlife protected areas are being overexploited.

Michael Pollan on the science of how psychedelics can 'shake your snow globe'

The mind-altering drugs may 'reboot your brain' and help disrupt ruts and unproductive mental habits

Kilauea's lava has been flowing for 35 years - what's science learning from the latest eruption?

Lava is bursting through the earth 20 kilometers away from the main volcano cone, which gives scientists the chance to study the volcano like never before.

Flesh eating bacteria stun the immune system into silence - with pain

This hints at why necrotizing fasciitis is so painful, and why the body doesn't fight it better

Flushing hippo toilets smother fish in African rivers

Hippos load their pools with poop, which then washes downstream creating temporary 'dead zones'

Green-blooded reptiles are on the edge of poisoning themselves

The blood is coloured by toxic bile pigments, which may be a defence against blood parasites

Is there a genetic marker for ethnicity?

More and more commercial DNA companies are popping up, But what do they actually tell you?

May 12, 2018 - James Hansen's 'I told you so', elephant earthquakes and third-hand smoke

Also digging into Mars, New Brunswick floods and health risks and could humans get heartworm?
Bob McDonald's blog

Why Kilauea is not a killer volcano

Hawaiian volcanoes are slow and steady eruptions that have been bubbling away for tens of thousands of years and will continue to do so in the future.

'Father of global warming' worries the climate young people inherit will be out of their control

James Hansen: ‘We could get multi-metre sea level rise on the timescale of 50-150 years’

Listening for elephant earthquakes might help us save pachyderms from poachers

Low frequency vibrations from elephant footfalls and vocalizations are being monitored using seismic equipment

'Third hand smoke' can leap from clothes and surfaces into the air you breathe

Researchers found that in a non-smoking room, up to one-third of the aerosols in the air were originally from smoke.

InSight lander will use seismology to see what's shaking on Mars

The InSight Lander will look below the surface of Mars for seismic activity as well as signs of water

Flood waters up in B.C., down in N.B. - what health concerns do they leave behind?

Post-flooding risks include bacterial and chemical contamination, and significant mental stress.

Why don't humans get heartworm like our canine friends?

Humans rarely get heartworm because our immune system is better equipped to recognise and destroy the parasitic worms than that of dogs

May 5, 2018 - Preserving brains for uploading, coral reefs sound sick, South American child sacrifice and more

A ray gun to stop rogue vehicles, the first bird beak and the Earth’s "dark side."
Bob McDonald's Blog

Why we need to see inside Mars

NASA's InSight mission will look inside the planet to see if there's energy to provide life underground.

Preserving your brain might kill you, but it could help you live forever

Scientists have developed a new technique for brain preservation that could be the first step - of many - in being revived after biological death.

The Great Barrier Reef sounds sick, so baby fishes aren't attracted to it

The fewer fish that return to the reef, the less able the reef is to recover.

Ancient Peruvians sacrificed 140 children by tearing their hearts out

The largest ever child sacrifice may have been to appease the gods over an El Nino driven climate disaster

Could this Pentagon-developed 'ray gun' have stopped the Toronto van attack?

The technology uses non-lethal microwave beams to stall engines.

A new fossil reveals the first bird beak - and it came with teeth as well

A study of the skull of Ichthyornis suggests the first known beaked bird still had a lot of dinosaur features, including teeth

Will the Earth ever have a 'dark side'

The Earth could become tidally locked to the Sun over many billions of years.

Scrap medical weed; women in space; and more

Scrap medical weed, women in space, an ancient giant sloth, ant-bias training, tiny birds sing long and loud