Natural Selections

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About
Natural Selections

On Natural Selections each week, join a short conversation on the natural world. Topics range from evolutionary biology to geology and wildlife, from climate science to animal and human behavior.

Ellen Rocco
The program is hosted by NCPR news director Martha Foley joined by naturalist Dr. Curt Stager of Paul Smith's College.

Support for Natural Selections is provided by the Glenn and Carol Pearsall Adirondack Foundation, dedicated to improving the quality of life for year-round residents of the Adirondack Park, and by Paul Smith's, the College of the Adirondacks.

New Book: Deep Future

"The course we take in the coming decades will affect not just the next hundred years, but the next hundred thousand years of life on this planet." --Curt Stager

Deep Future
In bookstores now

Order at: Amazon | Borders
Barnes & Noble | Books-A-Million | Powell's Books
And please remember your local independent booksellers. Find one near you.

 

Nature features

Curt Stager on On Point

Curt StagerListen to Dr. Curt Stager as the guest on On Point, 3/24/11, talking about his new book, Deep Future: the Next 100,000 Years of Life on Earth.

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Curt's Save the Carbon Blog

Spring, 2012: Just A Fluke, or A Taste of the Future?

Partial ice-out on Lower Saint Regis Lake , March 22, 2012.Record-high March temperatures have driven the ice... more

The weather of 2011: a waste or a wake-up call?

We've been having a difficult time with weather this year in the North Country.  But let's not... more

The Power of Moving Water

Spread your arms out sideways and your hands will be roughly one meter apart.  Use that span to sculpt an... more

Upper Jay, six days after Irene.

Six days after Irene drove the Ausable River and its tributaries over their banks, Kary and I visited the heavily... more

Irene devastates the Ausable Valley

Former hurricane ("tropical storm") Irene did relatively little damage last Sunday near my home in Paul Smiths, here in... more


Natural History
The Smithsonian is set to unpack something it's never had before: a rare, nearly complete Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton. It's a gift from a Montana museum that says this T. rex deserves to be famous.
 
A 325 million-year-old fossil find shows that the gill structures of modern sharks are actually quite different from their ancient ancestors.
 
Curators say they'll use the big grant from Boeing to better highlight how exploratory flight — from the Spirit of St. Louis to the <em></em>Starship Enterprise — has transformed the world.
 
An apprenticeship program in New York City helps lower-income and minority students break into advanced sciences. For one, the love of the stars was motivation to tackle the tough field of astronomy.
 
OK, maybe it just munched vegetation, small animals and eggs. But this newly named dino looked like a cross between a chicken and a bulked-up ostrich. Five-inch claws? We'd have stayed out of its way.
 
more science news from NPR

Natural Selections with hosts Martha Foley and Dr. Curt Stager airs Thursday mornings during The Eight O'Clock Hour.

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 Recent Natural Selections programs
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Natural Selections: Hawkowls

Martha Foley and Dr. Curt Stager discuss hawkowls, a very rare arctic visitor to the Adirondacks. This daytime predator differs in many ways from its more temperate cousins.  Go to full article

Natural Selections: Parasites

The relationships between parasites and their hosts is a complicated balance. Those that kill their hosts are failures in the long run. Dr Curt Stager and Martha Foley look at parasitism.  Go to full article

Natural Selections: Roadkill

Most drivers have had the experience of being unable to avoid animals in the road. How much of a threat to wildlife are we and our vehicles? Dr. Curt Stager and Martha Foley tally the carnage.  Go to full article

Natural Selections: Honeybees

Fewer honeybees doesn't just mean less honey. Honeybees also play a large role in the agricultural world. Dr. Curt Stager and Martha Foleytell why bees are such valuable resources.  Go to full article
Many strains or staph bacteria show resistance to drugs.
Many strains or staph bacteria show resistance to drugs.

Natural Selections: Drug Resistance

Bacteria and viruses can adapt with extreme speed to survive exposure to antibiotics and other drugs. Dr. Curt Stager and Martha Foley talk about the genetic changes and rapid evolution known as drug resistance.  Go to full article

Natural Selections: Opossums

Opossums are very ancient, as mammals go. These marsupials have spread their range into Northern New York over the last few decades. Martha Foley talks with Dr. Curt Stager about opossums.  Go to full article

Natural Selections: Flower Wilt

Flowers wilt for good reasons; good for the plant. Martha Foley and Dr. Curt Stager discuss how flowers and plants use water.  Go to full article

Natural Selections: The "Willies"

Why do certain sounds make us cringe? What are the "Willies"? Martha Foley and Dr. Curt Stager talk about how the body responds to fear.  Go to full article

Natural Selections: Balance of Nature

Is there a balance in nature? How is it maintained? How is it disrupted? Dr. Curt Stager tackles this question with Martha Foley.  Go to full article

Natural Selections: Dogs

When did wolves become dogs? How did they come to be "man's best friend?" Dr. Curt Stager and Martha Foley talk about canine evolution and domestication.  Go to full article

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