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Quirks and Quarks from CBC Radio
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Quirks and Quarks from CBC Radio

Author: CBC Radio

Subscribed: 31,089Played: 280,263


CBC Radio's Quirks and Quarks covers the quirks of the expanding universe to the quarks within a single atom... and everything in between.
121 Episodes
The diabolical ironclad beetle’s super-tough shell can even resist being run over by a car; How birds and mammals got their evolutionary edge by getting their legs under them; How 'forever chemicals' have come to contaminate even the remotest parts of Canada; How a Canadian vet took on the challenge of saving the world's great apes.
The coronavirus could be messing with your pain perception — and that could help it spread; A NASA probe with Canadian content will touch an asteroid next week; Which forest fires spew out the most CO2? It's the soil that matters, not the trees; Female moles are intersex — they have testicle-like tissue that helps them grow big and tough; Angry Weather: the science of blaming droughts, hurricanes and wildfires on climate change; Which trees provide the most oxygen over the course of a year, deciduous or evergreen?
Jennifer Doudna on her Nobel win, the ethics of gene editing, and CRISPR’s full potential; Decoy sea turtle eggs with GPS crack illegal egg trafficking; An 'awakening' moment: a sleeping pill restores function to a brain-injured patient; A new class of 'forever chemicals' is an emerging threat to our health and environment.
Here’s how Canada’s grizzlies are faring during Fat Bear week; DNA testing confirms singing dogs aren’t extinct in the wild after all; A wasp’s gruesome egg-laying organ inspires a new medical tool; Too much information: a new book explores the paradox of the information age; Is a planet full of exhaling humans contributing to global warming?
Oil sands tailings ponds are toxic. Canadian-made nanotech could help fix that. Male baboons make friends with females for just one reason: a longer life. Less than a teaspoon of dirt could hold the history of an entire landscape. Tickling rats to improve animal - and scientists’ - welfare. Five ways the universe might die - including one that could happen at any time
In lethally violent ‘woodpecker wars’ some birds fight, and some just come for the show. Unlocking the secrets of jumbo squid hibernation might improve human medicine. Short, dark and southern — many Vikings aren't who you thought they were. Fast, effective and ethically distributed — what we need from a COVID vaccine
Fisheries biologist copes with the shutdown by drafting his kids as research assistants. A stranded plastic pollution researcher maps COVID litter in her own backyard. Studying sparrows - and launching a movement in support of Black scientists. Dangerous, difficult and disgusting — Tracking cougar kills gives insights into the big cats
Quirks & Quarks is on hiatus for the summer. Our podcast will resume with new programs in September. In the meantime, you can dig deep into the feed for programs you missed, or visit our website to listen to our archives online. Have a great summer
Another episode of the always fascinating, always fabulous, Quirks & Quarks listener Question Show. We're answering questions like: do viruses have predators? What do animals taste? How do you weigh the earth, and how do bacteria eat plastic?
Oumuamua could be a relic from giant clouds where stars are born (1:33). Female genetic superiority: when it comes to survival, two X chromosomes beat an X and a Y (9:55). Megadrought: will the southwest part of North America be parched for decades? (24:56) How scientists in Quebec are stepping up to fight a climate-related rise in Lyme disease (32:44). Web extras: A snake with a toxic surprise (54:17), the secrets of ambergris (1:01:59), and adapting coral to climate change (1:10:02).
What if we hadn’t locked down? Studies show we saved many millions of lives. (1:36) The return of race science — the quest to fortify racism with bad biology. (9:31) A dinosaur’s s last meal of fresh ferns fossilized in incredible detail. (30:13) Pathway to Mars — is it ethical to go to the Red Planet? (38:07)
The key to early detection of COVID-19 outbreaks might be in sewage. (1:42) SpaceX takes humans to orbit, but who loses in the new landscape of space launch? (9:05) Experiment shows dogs might be willing to help you in a crisis, but they probably aren’t able. (17:55) Machine learning helps archaeologists identify the source of ancient poop. (25:33) Can we avoid an insect apocalypse with a new appreciation for creepy-crawlies? (32:16)
The science of why bad words feel so good during painful moments (1:40). 40 years ago Mount St. Helens blew its top, here's how it got green again (10:05). Recycling spare genes was how some plants turned into carnivores (27:48). COVID reopening: hoping it goes right — watching carefully how it might go wrong (35:53).
Turning COVID-related drop in CO2 emissions into a plan to fight climate change. A stand-up robot understands that timing is the secret to comedy. Fish fingers and bilateral symmetry — new fossils shed light critical stages of evolution. ‘Pretty much gambling:’ Canadian Prairie farmers are struggling with unstable conditions which will be worse with climate change.
COVID-19 and scientific confusion — What we don’t know and why we don’t know it. Vast boreal peatlands may dry up and burn in a warming climate. A giant sloth graveyard shows how these enormous animals died - and lived. Your brain on terror - a writer faces the science behind her fears
What the ice storm can teach us about the pre-natal impacts of pandemic stress, An unseen black hole has been lurking in our galactic neighbourhood. Now we know how koalas drink (we didn't before). Pathway to Mars - How astronauts will survive and thrive on Mars
Your brain’s ‘hunger’ for social interaction and your strange COVID dreams. Scientists describe ‘the most dangerous place in the history of planet Earth.' The wrong kind of ‘constellations’ are threatening astronomical observations. Sea level’s rising faster in the Maritimes, but science can help communities plan and prepare.
10 years after Deepwater Horizon — what has science learned from the spill? COVID-19 What we're learning — and what we need to know — about immunity. The threat from AI is not that it will revolt, it’s that it’ll do exactly as it’s told. Ragweed allergy sufferers in Europe get relief thanks to invasive beetle
‘Men are at a huge disadvantage’ — who is getting hit hardest by COVID-19 and why. Pterosaurs haven’t soared for 67 million years, but they can still teach us about flight. Earth Day 2020 — the 50th anniversary will be the weirdest Earth Day ever. The ‘super’ in this supernova means the biggest and brightest one we’ve ever seen
Unlocking Bryson’s Brain is the latest release from CBC Podcasts. Bryson seems like a perfectly healthy baby. But soon doctors confirm his parents’ worst fears: something is wrong with Bryson’s brain. Despite dozens of tests over nearly a decade, doctors come up empty in their efforts to find a diagnosis.Then one day, everything changes. Scientists working at the cutting edge of genetics believe they know what's causing Bryson's disease — and think it could be reversed. Here’s the first bonus episode of the new CBC podcast, Unlocking Bryson’s Brain. More episodes are available at
Comments (5)

Mmm Taylor

I'm in Canada. I'm 42. have had a scope done on each knee. Told I will need knee replacement in my future but am too young to have it now, which I understand. Recently referred to as the beginning stage of arthritis. If there is a way for it to be regenerated I'll do it. Right now taking Synvisc 1 injection. Made my appointment for the 2nd one. I dont think people look at this as having mobility issues but this is my life.

Nov 3rd


excellent science podcast. I have listened for many years on the CBC Radio Vancouver and now the podcast. lots of new blow your mind science and tech news with smart guests.

Jul 11th


I like the information that you can get from this podcast. but their hosts sound so mechanical and not off the cuff and that he's written it all down before the interview, It really kind of ruins any atmosphere that it would have. And the guest hosts just sound silly. Great information, Some of the most boring hosting ever.

Mar 27th


Great podcast, but the choice of transition music is terrible!

Feb 27th

Martin Z

i really don't appreciate this nonsense of moving channels to a new place thats exactly the same thing only now i dont know what ive listened to and what i havent

Jan 30th
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