Talk Like a Firefly

Science Friday: If you’re lucky enough to live where fireflies flash at night, then you have surely seen their magical illuminations on warm summer evenings. But did you know that by observing fireflies while they are flashing, you can learn to communicate with them? If you haven’t already, watch the Science Friday Video “In a Flash: Firefly Communication” for a little background on how fireflies use light to communicate:

By watching and comparing fireflies all across the country, scientists have been able to map out the unique flash patterns of male and female fireflies of different species. Dr. John E. Lloyd, an entomologist at the University of Florida, featured in the video above, was one of the first to do this extensively for North American species of firefly in the genus Photinus. Check out these family friendly activities from Science Friday. 

 

Life on the Reef | Episode Three

Tonight on Life on the Reef,  human and animal residents of the reef prepare as a category 5 cyclone brings destruction to the North Queensland coast. But as cyclone season finally gives way to calm seas, the reef begins to recover and thrive. From the mangroves to the coral cays, reef fish populations flourish, and mysterious dwarf minke whales arrive to enjoy the warm tropical waters. Tune into WSKG TV on August 5th at 8 pm for the third episode of Life on the Reef. About the Program

Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest living structure and one of the richest and most complex natural ecosystems on Earth.

Nuclear Meltdown Disaster

Tonight on NOVA, take a look into the Nuclear Meltdown Disaster that has forever changed  Japan.  Four years ago, a devastating earthquake and tsunami triggered a disastrous meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. But at the same time, just seven miles away, the heroic efforts of plant operators under the leadership of Naohiro Masuda saved a second plant, Fukushima Daini. Now Masuda faces the daunting challenge of cleaning up Daiichi, where a witches’ brew of radioactive groundwater leaks into the Pacific every day and three melted cores remain steaming hot and lethally unapproachable. With unprecedented access, NOVA reveals the little-known story of how Masuda and his team averted disaster at Daini and how workers are struggling to clean up the mess at Daiichi.

Life on the Reef | Episode One

Tonight on Life on the Reef, tourists flock to the reef to enjoy the perfect weather, and the humpback whales are here to give birth. Fire destroys a luxury yacht, and a critical rescue is launched. On the most protected island in Australia, 20,000 green sea turtles return to the biggest reptilian breeding colony on Earth. Tune in Wednesday July 22 at 8pm on WSKG for the first episode of Life on the Reef. 

 

About the Program
Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest living structure and one of the richest and most complex natural ecosystems on Earth. To some, this place is full of mystery and hardship, an alien world full of bizarre, beautiful and deadly creatures.

Chasing Pluto

After nine years and 3 billion miles, PBS NOVA will finally get a close look at Pluto, but only if the New Horizons spacecraft can survive the final, treacherous leg of its journey through a dangerous field of debris. If it does, New Horizons is poised to make dramatic new discoveries, not just about Pluto, but about the vast realm of icy bodies lurking beyond Neptune, relics of the earliest days of the solar system’s formation. Back on Earth, the planetary scientists who have spent decades working on this mission anxiously await a signal from their spacecraft. If all goes well, we’ll see Pluto’s mysterious surface in unprecedented detail and learn new secrets about other alien worlds at the far limits of our solar system. Tune into the latest posts from NASA’s New Horizons control room. 

 

Learn more about NOVA’s Chasing Pluto.

Are We Killing the Colorado River?

“Killing the Colorado,” a joint reporting project by ProPublica and Matter, set out to tell the truth about the American West’s water crisis. As serious as the drought is, the investigation found that mismanagement of that region’s surprisingly ample supply has led to today’s emergency. Among the causes are the planting of the thirstiest crops; arcane and outdated water rights laws; the unchecked urban development in unsustainable desert environments; and the misplaced confidence in human ingenuity to engineer our way out of a crisis — with dams and canals, tunnels and pipelines.  See images that tell a bleak future. 

 

Listen in as Renee Montagne talks to Propublica’s Abrahm Lustgarten about the Colorado River’s falling water levels, and how flawed water policies and mismanagement are to blame — in addition to the drought.

Skunk Bear | How to Make Lava

How does one in upstate New York study lava you might ask? Visit Syracuse Univeristy of course, where researchers are creating magma in a giant cauldron. Lava is powerful — it’s constantly building and rebuilding our world. NPR Skunk Bear’s Adam Cole took a trip from  Washington, DC to witness lava creation at Syracuse University first hand.  

Visit NPR’s Skunk Bear Tumblr.

Operation Wild | Episode Two

Tune in July 8th at 8pm on WSKG TV for episode 2, of Operation Wild, we join a team in South Africa that is trying to help a rhino who was attacked by poachers for her horn. Thandi was nursed back to health by rhino vet Dr Will Fowlds, and he’s joined by a human plastic surgeon who is planning to heal the wound on her face with a world first — a rhino skin graft. Deep in Borneo rainforest, Dr. Birute Galdikass looks after ill and injured orangutans before releasing them into the wild. Orangutan Rosemary has been brought back from the rainforest with her 7-year-old daughter Rodney, because her cataracts make her virtually blind. They will only be released if specialist microsurgery helps Rosemary see again.

Kart Kingdom Live Game Event

Join WSKG Public Media at the Broome County Public Library on Tuesday July 28th for a fun afternoon playing a PBS KIDS Kart Kingdom Live Game! Four teams will challenge each other using engineering skills to outwit their competitors in the game ‘Water Works’. Teams will work together, design, communicate and travel through the Water Works game during this hour long event. Space is limited, register here, choose a specific start time. It is important to arrive at your registered time so we can accommodate all participants.

Passion for Pixels

SciGirls has a passion for pixels. When you look at a photo of a planet in space, did you know that you’re really looking at a set of numbers? Remote-sensing satellites take pictures and gather data that is transmitted to the ground as digital signals, or sets of numbers. Then computer software converts the numbers into color images. Have your students play with data transmission using this SciGirls activity as you guide them through encoding messages into digital signals they send each other.