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Wednesday, 1 July, 2020

The race to save our koalas; Malaysia’s flying snakes; spy scandal at America’s Cup; and Spot the robot dog.

 

EPISODE TRANSCRIPT 

 

THE LOWDOWN

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They’re one of Australia’s most iconic native animals. A drawcard for international tourists, an important part of the habitats they live in and one of a handful of Aussie animals for which our country is world-renowned. So the report yesterday that unless urgent action is taken to protect them, koalas in NSW could be extinct by 2050 – came as a wake-up call.

An inquiry conducted for the NSW state parliament found that koala habitat destruction – by logging activities as well as by this year’s devastating bushfires – had meant the koala population in the state was much smaller than the experts thought. 

The inquiry recommended creating new national parks to protect koala habitats, doing a proper count of the koala population to properly understand the problem and the establishment of wildlife hospitals in koala hotspots across the state. The NSwnational treasure which we will do everything we can to protect for future generations”.

 

SPIN THE GLOBE

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Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops. And today we’ve landed in Malaysia … in South-East Asia – where scientists have been studying a snake that flies from tree to tree. 

Researchers took a bunch of paradise tree snakes to a special laboratory to photograph them as they leapt from one tree to another – to discover whether the slithering motion they make served any aerodynamic purposes. Which is to say: did the slithering in mid-air help them to fly? 

After filming lots and lots of jumps – and putting it all through their clever stop-motion computers – scientists concluded that while the slithering didn’t help them fly, per se, it did help them keep their balance in mid-air and ensured they got from one tree to another without falling like a stone to the forest floor. 

Flying snakes? Sounds like my worst nightmare…

 

SPORTS TIME!

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The high-stakes world of the America’s Cup yacht race was rocked with spying allegations yesterday following accusations that people involved with the New Zealand team had been secretly sharing confidential information with competitors in Europe.

The design of yachts and the race tactics of each team competing are always closely guarded secrets in the America’s Cup – as each team tries to get an advantage over the others.  

So when there’s a suggestion that team secrets are being leaked – it’s a huge big deal.

The America’s Cup is the most prestigious yacht race in the world – held every four years. New Zealand won the Cup in 2017 and is preparing to host the competition and defend the Cup in waters off Auckland next year. 

Hopefully now without any more spies getting in their way.

 

POP CULTURE CORNER

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Remember Spot, the robot dog? About a month ago we brought you the story of a robot created to look and walk like a dog that was being used in Singapore to patrol parks and make sure people were social distancing. Well, now you can have your very own robot dog. And it will only cost you $110,000. 

Creators of Spot the robot dog are starting to make him available to private buyers. 

But what would you use a robot dog for? He doesn’t fetch sticks, doesn’t have a furry coat and big brown eyes – and doesn’t come in for cuddles. 

Robot dogs, according to their makers, have been designed to do jobs that fall under the category of the three D’s … dull, dirty, and dangerous.

I know a couple of kids who think every chore they have to do around the house falls into at least two of those categories … 

 

ROSIE’S RECIPES

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Every Wednesday, we stick our head into the Squiz Kids kitchen to see what Rosie’s been cooking this week.

And the question Rosie wants to ask is: Who doesn’t love a choc chip cookie? Practically no-one that’s who. And thanks to Squiz Kids listener, Dana, Rosie has trialled a recipe that is just delicious – creating a batch of cookies that are the perfect combination of crunchy and chewy. And with school holidays here (or almost here – depending where you live) – it’s the perfect time to get busy in the kitchen and whip up a batch of Dana’s delicious goodies.

The recipe plus photos of the process and finished product are all on the Squiz Kids website.

 

THE S’QUIZ

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This is the part of the podcast where you get to test how well you’ve been listening …

  1. Which native Australian animal is under threat of extinction according to a new report?
  2. In which country do paradise tree snakes ‘fly’ from tree to tree?
  3. What’s the name of the international yacht race that’s been rocked by spying allegations? 

 

SHOUT OUTS

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It’s July 1 … birthday of Aussie formula one driver, Daniel Riccardo, and one of the country’s most successful singers, John Farnham … ask your parents about Farnsie. 

It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today. 

Isaac from Paddington, Levi from WA, Isabella from Oran Park, Fred from Sydney, Enzo from Canberra, Sylvie from Bethanga, Ruby from Lakewood, Hassan from The Ponds, Shaniqe from Broken Hill, Josiah from Geraldton, Imogen from Concord, Miroslav from NSW, Tegan from Bolton Point and Hugo from Auckland, New Zealand. 

And some belated birthday shoutouts… Zavier from Bathurst, Abby from Sydney and Thomas from North Rocks.

Happy birthday to you all. 

Today’s classroom shoutouts… Year 4 at Stradbroke School, Year 3/4 at Oakwood Primary School, Class 5/6R at St John’s Primary School in Mullumbimby, class 4/5/6V at Wallacia PS whose teacher Mrs Van Vliet, celebrates a birthday today, who teaches class 6CD at Valentine Public School where its also happy birthday to Ms Denz  .

 

The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Koala
  2. Malaysia
  3. The America’s Cup