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The Conversation: Monday, July 27th 2015

Sue Salisbury / Flickr
Sue Salisbury / Flickr

The Conversation: Monday, July 27th 2015

Okeanos Explorer: Dr. Christopher Kelley


Telepresence may sound like a word out of the world of the paranormal. In fact it's the use of real-time broadband satellite communications to connect discoveries made by ship with live with audiences ashore. It's the mission of the Okeanos Explorer. One of the latest expeditions just completed this past weekend after mapping of the Johnston Atoll region of the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument. Dr. Christopher Kelley was in Hawaii receiving the data from the latest exploration.

  • Intro Music: Manic Monday by The Bangles
  • Outro Music:  Night Diving by Thrice

Lose More Ground to Mosquitoes: Eben Paxton


Among Hawaii’s endangered endemic bird species, the ‘Amakihi is very valuable to researchers because it’s found not only near sea level, but in upland forests as well. Introduced mosquito borne diseases such as avian malaria and bird pox can wreak havoc on our native birds, and lowland ‘Amakihi seem to have developed immunity much better than their upland neighbors. It’s too cold for mosquitoes to live upslope, so upland birds aren’t exposed. But if the overall temperatures rise, mosquitoes will move higher up too, and that could spell real trouble for native mountain manu. Research Ecologist Dr. Eben Paxton joined us from the Kilauea Field Station on Hawaii Island.

  • Intro Music:  Free Bird by Lynyrd Skynyrd
  • Outro Music:  I Like Birds by Eels

Morbilliviruses: Dr. Michelle Barbieri

USFWS Headquarters / Flickr
Credit USFWS Headquarters / Flickr


They're cute, at least from a distance and you probably know that monk seals are endangered. One of the dangers they and dolphins face is a form of distemper. Recently scientists and volunteers with the NOAA Monk Seal Research Program vaccinated local monk seals against morbilliviruses. I sat down with conservation medicine veterinarian, Michelle Barbieri before she had to catch a plane for Australia to talk about the project. I asked her how concerned she is that marine distemper is a real threat to the monk seal population.

  • Intro Music: Dreaming by Pacific Dub
  • Outro Music: Kiss from a Rose by Classic Field Orchestra
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