Inquiry welcomes back artist, writer and natural historian JULIE ZICKEFOOSE to talk about her new book THE BLUEBIRD EFFECT: UNCOMMON BONDS WITH COMMON BIRDS. This sumptuous and fascinating book details her decades long experiences in rehabilitating young birds and is one of the best natural history books published this year. Rehabilitating nestlings is hard, frustrating, time consuming work that is also very rewarding because you get to know the birds intimately in a way no birder or even most ornithologists do. Tune in and find out about Julie’s life as an artist, and what it takes to raise unusual species like hummingbirds and swifts.
If you have ever had a class in lab, then you have seen a Periodic Table poster hanging on the wall. Have you ever wondered about this family tree of elements, who created it and who got name these elements? Tune into Inquiry tonight when we talk with writer and journalist SAM KEAN about his entertaining meditation on the elements THE DISAPPEARING SPOON AND OTHER TRUE TALES OF MADNESS, LOVE AND THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD FROM THE PERIODIC TABLE OF ELEMENTS. Each element, from Aluminium to Zinc, has a long and complex tale of its discovery and its usages. Where did the crazy name Ytterbium ever come from? Who were the great element hunters? Why was Cadmium the element of choice used to kill Godzilla and what element did Mark Twain envisage Mephistopheles to be composed of? What was so very special about the Parker 51 pen? All this and much more will revealed in tonight’s Inquiry.