Wednesday, 27 May, 2020

Black cocky bushfire comeback; Jumbo jet rocket fail; Mt Isa’s virtual rodeo; and Dance Monkey does it again. 






After the fires, the green shoots poke through. And that’s what conservationists are celebrating on Kangaroo Island this week following the hatching of 23 glossy black cockatoo chicks in the wild. 

Kangaroo Island, off the coast of South Australia, was devastated by last summer’s bushfires – and there were fears the the island’s native fauna had been wiped out. But the hatching of the cockatoo chicks – which are an endangered species – has conservationists there hopeful that the island and its inhabitants will make a full recovery. 


And a congratulatory slap on the back to all of us, with news yesterday that our efforts at staying indoors and remaining in lockdown for the past weeks has saved the lives of up to 14,000 Australians. 

The country’s Chief Medical officer, Brendan Murphy, yesterday told an inquiry at Canberra’s Parliament House that our ‘aggressive’ response to the coronavirus – including widespread testing and social distancing – meant we could now start to ease restrictions.

Comparing Australia to the United Kingdom – which has a similar health system – Professor Murphy said we had had 100 people die from the coronavirus compared to 37,000 in the UK.




Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story wherever it stops – and today, the globe has stopped off the coast of Southern California, in the United States, where an ambitious experiment to launch a rocket into space from a jumbo jet has experienced a minor hiccup. 

The rocket detached from under the plane’s wing alright, but failed to make it out of the Earth’s atmosphere.

But that’s ok. Because in science, as with many things in life, you need to fail and learn from the failure in order to eventually succeed. And that’s what the scientists are doing now. Poring over the data, looking at what went right and what went wrong and making plans to give it another go. 

Called Virgin Orbit – and conceived by British businessman Richard Branson – the space program aims to pioneer a new way to launch satellites into space.




Yee-ha! Cowboys and cowgirls of Australia – it’s time to put on your cowboy hats and brush up on your bucking bronco riding skills. The rodeo is coming to a screen near you.

Every year, the outback Queensland town of Mt Isa is flooded with visitors attending the annual Mt Isa Rodeo. This year’s event had to be cancelled, because … coronavirus. But that hasn’t stopped organisers from planning a virtual rodeo – beamed live on the internet for what they hope will be a global audience. They’re inviting cowboys and cowgirls from all over the world to send in a video of their best ride for the past two years – which will then be assessed by the rodeo judges. The event happens at the start of August – which means you’ve got plenty of time to get your video in. And no, before you ask: riding your pet dog around the backyard most certainly does not count. 




Dance Monkey by Tones and I … it’s one of those songs that you either love or can’t stand. If you’re in the ‘can’t stand’ camp, you’ll be disappointed to learn that it’s just won a major Australian music industry award for song of the year. Dance Monkey took out the gong at the APRA Awards announced on Monday night. The other big winner was Hilltop Hoods. The hip-hop outfit won the coveted songwriter of the year award for their hit, Leave Me Lonely.

Oh – and Monkey haters: you’ll be pleased to know that Dance Monkey has been streamed more than 7 billion times and went to the top of the charts in 45 countries. Sometimes, you just can’t keep a good primate down. 




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

And she’s gone back to indulge her love of chocolate it seems – trying a recipe sent in by Brittany from Ferny Hills in Brisbane. 

Called Oreo Cookie Balls, Rosie reports that these little balls of chocolate-and-cream-cheese goodness – which are a favourite among Brittany’s family in New York City – are perfect little additions to any lunch box. Because, as Rosie says: “We’ve all got those back to school feels this week. And we all need a pick-me-up to get us to the end of the week”.

The recipe and photos of the process and finished product are all on the Squiz Kids website. Don’t forget: if you have a favourite recipe that YOU like to cook that you’d like Rosie to try… AND to feature in this segment – be sure to send it to: [email protected].




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

  1. What is the name of the island where glossy black cockatoo chicks have hatched?
  2. Name the outback Queensland town which will play host to a virtual rodeo this year?
  3. Name the song that won Song Of The Year at this year’s APRA awards?




Today’s birthday shoutouts… Piper from Kings Langley, Matthew from Proserpine, Cassie from Birchgrove

Ada and Tammy from Sydney, Thomas from Melbourne, Maxime from Wahroonga, Matilda from Kedron, Saskia from Wagga Wagga, Tristian from Baldivis, Michelle from Balmain, Emily from Cromer, Shaella from Brisbane, Talon from Springwood, Madeleine from Adelaide and Brianna from Orange

And some belated birthday shoutouts…Joshua from Balmain and Jacob from Port Macquarie

Happy birthday to you all.  

Today’s classroom shoutouts… Mrs Meers’ Year 4 class St Brigid’s in Coonamble, Year 3/4 at Ashmont Public School, 5A at Fitzgerald State School and Felix and his class 2 Amy at Westgarth Primary School. 


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Kangaroo Island
  2. Mt Isa
  3. Dance Monkey