RNZ: Our Changing World

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Getting out in the field and the lab to bring you New Zealand stories about science, nature and the environment. With Alison Ballance.

RNZ


    • Jun 29, 2022 LATEST EPISODE
    • weekly NEW EPISODES
    • 18m AVG DURATION
    • 1,042 EPISODES


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    Latest episodes from RNZ: Our Changing World

    The resilience of crayfish in Tauranga Harbour

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 29, 2022 27:48

    PhD student Kiamaia Ellis describes crayfish as a ‘vulnerable tāonga species'. Local iwi in Tauranga believe the crayfish population is decreasing because of urban, industrial and harvesting pressures. But Kiamaia is keen to be a part of the solution, so she's studying the resilience of pēpi kōura / baby crayfish. She wants to understand how these tiny species – that take eight years to become an adult – are able to thrive based on a kaitiakitanga or guardianship approach.

    Helping seabirds return to Karioi

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 22, 2022 26:35

    Working with the community and local schools, the Karioi Project aims to turn the tide on biodiversity loss in their area. In recent years they've rallied around the grey-faced petrel, or ōi, who they hope to help return to the maunga.

    The promises and perils of chemistry research

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 15, 2022 30:14

    Two stories about the promise and perils of chemistry research. From a team recreating Renaissance beauty recipes in the hopes of rediscovering a 'miracle ingredient', to a researcher investigating New Zealand's deadliest synthetic cannabinoid.

    Digging into the past of sleeping giant faults

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 8, 2022 26:51

    The Nevis Fault is a sleeping giant fault, one that awakens only every 10,000 years or so. This week, a team of geologists use paleoseismic trenching to answer questions about this fault and to figure out the pattern of past earthquakes.

    The 2021 Prime Minister's Science Prizes

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 1, 2022 30:49

    It's Prime Minister's Science Prize time! We meet some of the people awarded the 2021 prizes for their mahi.

    Biodiversity and the city

    Play Episode Listen Later May 25, 2022 29:57

    Researchers from the University of Waikato are tackling the tricky question of how to restore native biodiversity in our urban areas.

    The red seaweed of Otago Harbour

    Play Episode Listen Later May 18, 2022 26:38

    We join Marine Science PhD student Namrata Chand on her Autumn field work collecting seaweed samples to learn more about this 'underdog of the ocean'.  

    Business not as usual for heart health

    Play Episode Listen Later May 11, 2022 28:20

    Pūtahi Manawa / Healthy Hearts for Aotearoa has an ambitious goal - to close the inequity gaps in heart health. Researchers in this Centre of Research Excellence explain the gaps that exist & how they plan to address them.

    Naturally rare and threatened

    Play Episode Listen Later May 4, 2022 30:04

    Claire Concannon meets with some of the people working to protect Aotearoa's naturally rare ecosytems and the endangered plants found within them.

    2022 a boomer year for kākāpō

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 27, 2022 29:49

    Alison Ballance joins the kākāpō recovery team on Pukenui Anchor Island to hear how the 2021/2022 kākāpō breeding season is going.

    Frozen in time

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 20, 2022 28:33

    A visit to Scott's Terra Nova hut to learn about the care given to the objects by Antarctic Heritage Trust conservators. This is an edit of the Antarctic Heritage Trust's podcast 'Frozen in Time: Scott's Antarctic Legacy'.

    Restoring Scott's Terra Nova Hut

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 20, 2022 12:44

    A visit to Scott's Terra Nova hut to learn about the care given to the objects by Antarctic Heritage Trust conservators. This is an edit of the Antarctic Heritage Trust's podcast 'Frozen in Time: Scott's Antarctic Legacy'.

    Researching best care for the smallest of patients

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 13, 2022 28:04

    Justin Gregory finds out about a study investigating how pre-term babies are fed during their first few weeks, and whether there is a better way.

    Getting ready for our warmer future

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 6, 2022 27:56

    Stories about looking our warming world in the eye, and preparing for what is coming next. Collecting data about extreme temperatures in estuaries to help manage shellfish populations. Plus what might managed retreat of marae threatened by sea level rise mean for Māori communities.

    The future of cancer treatment

    Play Episode Listen Later Mar 30, 2022 30:05

    At the Malaghan Institute of Medical Research a team of scientists are working on what they believe will be the future of cancer treatment in New Zealand.

    The energy problem

    Play Episode Listen Later Mar 23, 2022 30:39

    Two stories on addressing our energy problem - using AI to maximise locally produced renewable energy and reducing the carbon footprint of ammonia production.

    The first glance

    Play Episode Listen Later Mar 16, 2022 26:23

    A story of a community taking the lead to investigate their own history. Near the small fishing village of Moeraki, whānau members are doing the work of excavating, sorting, and identifying artifacts from an old Māori archaeological site.

    When good science takes time

    Play Episode Listen Later Mar 9, 2022 30:09

    This sea week Our Changing World joins Dr. Kim Currie on the Munida transect time-series - a long running investigation of how the chemistry of the oceans off New Zealand is changing.

    Conservation benefits

    Play Episode Listen Later Mar 2, 2022 27:09

    Creating safe spaces for wildlife to thrive means benefit for the local community too. This week, two stories on that theme.

    Finding faults and eavesdropping on earthquakes

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 23, 2022 28:31

    Alison Ballance catches up with two earthquake researchers. Geologist Carolyn Boulton is a ‘fault finder', interested in how faults slide. And geophysicist Martha Savage eavesdrops on the earth to better understand why earthquakes do what they do.

    Multi-talented macroalgae

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 16, 2022 29:53

    Claire visits a macroalgae research facility in Tauranga to learn how and why the team there are growing large quantities of seaweed and freshwater macroalgae.

    Honey fingerprints and plant powers

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 9, 2022 30:14

    Claire learns about honey fingerprinting while Katy Gosset meets a scientist studying the anti-microbial properties of some native plants.

    Hunting for meteorites

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 2, 2022 30:08

    Claire joins a meteorite hunt on the South Island's West Coast and learns what these rocks from space can tell us about the early formation of our solar system.

    Tuning in to nature

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 26, 2022 26:08

    The story of titipounamu, New Zealand's smallest bird, on Otago Peninsula, told by Karthic SS, a wildlife film maker and podcast producer based in Dunedin.

    Summer Science: Voices - To spray or not to spray

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 19, 2022 13:39

    Summer science continues with a play of a science related episode from RNZ's Voices podcast. In 'To spray or not to spray' we meet Tim Vandervoet as he investigates ways to reduce insecticide use in orchards. 

    Summer Science: What's in the water? All about the Pb in our H20

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 12, 2022 14:33

    Centre for Science Communication student Laura McDonald speaks to Dr. Mike Palin about lead contamination in the environment.

    Summer Science: Black Sheep - Invasive: the story of Stewart Smith

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 5, 2022 43:42

    Summer science continues with a play of a science related episode from RNZ's Black Sheep podcast. Invasive tells the story of one man who released thousands of invasive fish into New Zealand's rivers, lakes and streams.

    Summer Science: There's something in the water

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 29, 2021 13:05

    Centre for Science Communication student William Bowden speaks to Dr. Mike Joy & Dr. Tim Chambers about the issue of nitrates in New Zealand's waterways.

    Unwelcome visitors

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 22, 2021 30:16

    How to deal with unwelcome visitors. Katy Gosset learns about a native fungus that might help in the battle against wilding pines. And two national research programmes combine on an expedition to protect our oceans from plastics and invasive species.

    Using chemistry to uncover the past

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 15, 2021 29:05

    Chemical isotope analysis is a powerful technique - Dr. Charlotte King explains to Claire how she uses it to reconstruct past lives of forgotten people from the Otago gold rush.

    Introducing Sci Fi Sci Fact

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 9, 2021 3:58

    Sci Fi / Sci Fact is a new podcast series in which scientists from New Zealand's MacDiarmid Institute talk to RNZ host Bryan Crump about whether some of science-fiction's most popular concepts could actually come true.

    Keeping an eye on river flow

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 8, 2021 30:14

    Two stories on keeping an eye on river flow - helping fish to migrate back upstream, and development of a national river flow forecasting tool.

    Listening to the hum of the Alpine Fault

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 1, 2021 27:19

    A team of scientists are installing an array of seismic sensors along the South Island's Alpine Fault. Claire Concannon joins them to find out how and why.

    Restoration - battling predators and planting trees

    Play Episode Listen Later Nov 24, 2021 26:08

    Katy Gosset speaks to a PhD student designing new tech to catch predators and Claire Concannon meets the team who are working to restore a unique landscape on the South Island's West Coast.

    100 years of radio and the spectrum of light

    Play Episode Listen Later Nov 17, 2021 27:14

    On the 100th anniversary of radio in Aotearoa, Claire Concannon learns about the very first broadcast, explores how radio works, and finds out about current research into communicating using light.

    Sniffing out cancer

    Play Episode Listen Later Nov 10, 2021 28:06

    Claire visits the team at K9 Medical Detection Charitable Trust to learn how their dogs are being trained to detect bowel and prostate cancer.

    Tōtara treasure hunt

    Play Episode Listen Later Nov 3, 2021 28:53

    Claire Concannon hits the Central Otago hills with Botany PhD student Ben Teele to imagine the landscape as it use to be, and to follow the clues to find leftover pockets of tōtara trees.

    Favourite plants

    Play Episode Listen Later Oct 27, 2021 30:10

    Claire Concannon hears how the the New Zealand Plant Conservation Network's favourite plant competition is shaping up, while Katy Gosset learns about research to improve the quality and growth efficiency of grapevines.

    The details behind the data

    Play Episode Listen Later Oct 20, 2021 28:47

    This week on Our Changing World, Aotearoa Science Agency's Damian Christie speaks to three scientists about the world of data.  

    The New Zealand genetic frontotemporal dementia study

    Play Episode Listen Later Oct 13, 2021 28:38

    Claire Concannon hears from Dr. Brigid Ryan of the University of Auckland about the New Zealand genetic frontotemporal dementia study and speaks to some of the family members involved in this unique research study.

    Bioengineering

    Play Episode Listen Later Oct 6, 2021 28:52

    Stories about the potential of bioengineering to transform health care. A new tracheostomy kit design that has halved the time for emergency operations and 3D bioprinting of tissues to help healing.

    Physics on ice

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 29, 2021 39:40

    Stories of physics research in Antarctica - into, under, and from within the ice. Claire finds out about measuring sea ice thickness and supercooling. Katy Gosset learns how scientists detect neutrinos from outer space.

    Brain stories - Parkinsons disease & perceiving masked emotions

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 22, 2021 30:44

    Claire Concannon learns about experiments aimed at slowing Parkinson's Disease progression. Sonia Yee explores research into our perception of emotions in a mask-filled world.

    The kākā's return

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 15, 2021 28:02

    The return of South Island kākā to the the Ōtepoti Dunedin area has been a bit of a rollercoaster ride. Claire Concannon hears about the tragedies and the triumphs, and the plans for what comes next. 

    Wading into mangrove research

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 8, 2021 27:42

    Native mangroves in Aotearoa are expanding, putting them in conflict with local communities & councils. A wade into the research about the value of mangroves & how they are managed.

    Caring for the forest

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 1, 2021 29:43

    Katy Gosset finds out how researchers investigate the plant penetration powers of myrtle rust. Claire Concannon speaks with the caretaker of a tropical forest and hundreds of butterflies

    Surveying the skies

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 25, 2021 31:43

    Two stories of looking to the skies. Claire Concannon joins a hunt for planets outside of our solar system. Katy Gosset reveals the results of the annual New Zealand Garden Birds Survey.

    A new way to make vaccines

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 18, 2021 26:34

    This week, how information flows in the cell from DNA to proteins, and how scientists have tapped into this to enable a new way to make vaccines using messenger RNA.  

    Forty feathered needles in a forest haystack

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 11, 2021 30:01

    How do you find a tiny robin in a whole lot of forest? Researchers have been tracking the movements of forty North Island robins, or toutouwai, that have been reintroduced to a large reserve area near Palmerston North. Claire Concannon finds out how these Massey University researchers monitor them, and what they are learning.

    Mind Games

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 5, 2021 29:32

    How do you get in the zone to achieve your very best in an activity? And does a cheering crowd help? This week, two stories about the psychology of performance - the advantages of being at home, and how to find your flow.

    Running low on energy

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 28, 2021 26:52

    Researchers from the University of Waikato talk about Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S) – a condition in which athletes don't take in the right amount of calories to do the exercise they are doing. Katie Schofield & Holly Thorpe explain why the problem is much more complex than just calorie intake, and why it is important to research this condition in a multidisciplinary way.

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