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Preview: Pulse of the Planet

Pulse of the Planet Podcasts with Jim Metzner

Each weekday, Pulse of the Planet provides its listeners with a two-minute sound portrait of Planet Earth, tracking the rhythms of nature, culture and science worldwide and blending interviews and extraordinary natural sound.

Published: Sun, 04 Dec 2016 22:39:43 PST

Last Build Date: Sun, 04 Dec 2016 22:39:43 PST

Copyright: Copyright 1990-2012 Jim Metzner Productions, Inc. All rights reserved.

Weeds: Most Wanted

Fri, 04 Jul 2003 00:00:00 PDT

An exotic plant can be like the proverbial rotten apple.

Weeds: All in the Name

Thu, 03 Jul 2003 00:00:00 PDT

What do you call a plant in the wrong place at the wrong time?

Mongolia - Naadam

Wed, 02 Jul 2003 00:00:00 PDT

An 800 year old festival continues from its origin as a "boot camp."

Crete: Wedding Music

Tue, 01 Jul 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Love is in the air and so is a wealth of Cretan music.

Weeping Icon

Mon, 30 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Pilgrims travel to a small monastery in Texas to witness a phenomenon.

Locusts: Avoiding Collisions

Fri, 27 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Research on locusts will someday result in an automobile collision avoidance system.

Locusts: Nature

Thu, 26 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Scientists are taking a close look at what locusts do very well - get out of the way of onrushing objects.

Locusts: Star Wars

Wed, 25 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Blockbuster movie plays neuroscience lab: "Action potentials" soar!!

Ants & Caterpillars: Interdependence

Tue, 24 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Did you ever consider an ant to be the perfect baby-sitter?

Ants & Caterpillars: Sound

Mon, 23 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Sound - and sweet excretions - are ingredients for harmonious behavior between ants and caterpillars.

Scandinavian Summer Solstice - History

Fri, 20 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

For Swedish Americans the Summer solstice brings light to their hearts.

Scandinavian Summer Solstice - Dance

Thu, 19 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Maryland is the site of an annual celebration where folks of all ages delight in dancing around a maypole until the sun sets.

Eisteddfod: Welsh Singing Competition

Wed, 18 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

A series of talent competitions are rooted in ancient Welsh history.

Crete - Singing Up the Sun

Tue, 17 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

The celebration of the Cretan cherry harvest continues until dawn, for men singing ancient local songs, callded rezydika.

Crete - Cherry Festival

Mon, 16 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

In a small Cretan village, the annual cherry harvest brings revelry punctuated with gunshots and music.

Designing From Nature

Fri, 13 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

What are the challenges facing a designer who looks to nature for her inspiration?


Thu, 12 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Sea horses are not only unique visually, but also in their reproductive behavior.

Hurricane Service

Wed, 11 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

A fellowship service inspires human qualities in the face of natural disasters.

Appalachian Spring: Poke & Ramps

Tue, 10 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Springtime brings the culinary delight of wild ramps to this Appalachian community.

Appalachian Spring: Plant Pharmacy

Mon, 09 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

In rural Appalachia, if you need to get to the drug store for something ailing you, the remedy might be found growing outside your door.

Insects: Silent Crickets

Fri, 06 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

The familiar chirping of crickets is the sound of males trying to attract females. But some male crickets use silence to their advantage.

Slurry Technology: Medical Uses

Thu, 05 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Paramedics using a new kind of ice slurry could help save victims of stroke and cardiac arrest.

Slurry Technology: Air Conditioning

Wed, 04 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

A type of slurry, similar to the rainbow colored variety we enjoy in slush drinks, is a futuristic element for large scale structural cooling.

Bugs in the Water - Living Barometer

Tue, 03 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Populations shifts of different organisms within the same stream bed can indicate changes in water quality.

Bugs in the Water - Water Quality

Mon, 02 Jun 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Bugs and organisms offer an indication of environmental changes in the aquatic habitat.

Ospreys: Raising a Family

Fri, 30 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

For a special pair of ospreys, "Virginia Is For Lovers".

Ospreys - Nest

Thu, 29 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

In the Chesapeake bay region, migrating ospreys find an architecturally unique habitat for nesting -with some help from humans.

Musical Brains: Baby Talk

Wed, 28 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

According to a child psychologist at the University of Toronto, baby talk is truly a universal language.

Musical Brains: Lullabies

Tue, 27 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

The unique qualities of lullabies transcend age and culture.


Mon, 26 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

In honor of Azorean Portuguese ancestors and a beloved queen, the festival of Chamarita is one of humble origin.

Snake River Birds of Prey: History

Fri, 23 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Raptor populations such as the hawk and prairie falcon, can directly indicate the health of our earthly environment.

Snake River Birds of Prey: Prairie Falcons

Thu, 22 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Prairie Falcons soar to exhilarating heights along eighty-two miles of river canyon in Idaho.

Accordion Festival: Scandinavian Culture

Wed, 21 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

A yearly festival of music is a rich display of Scandinavian culture for Americans proud of their heritage.

Accordion Festival: Walter Eriksson

Tue, 20 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Each Memorial Day accordion players from around the world gather in New Jersey.

Alaskan Native Fish Camp

Mon, 19 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Every year, native elders attend Kalukak Bay Fish Camp in Alaska to preserve the traditions of the Yup'ik Nation.

Rattlesnake Roundup

Fri, 16 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Milking venom from rattlesnakes has yielded benefits for medical science.

Big Trees: Value

Thu, 15 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

For many of America's oldest trees, imperfection enabled survival.

Big Trees: To Be A Champion

Wed, 14 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Who knows, you may have a Champion Class tree in your yard!

Shorebirds: Western Sandpipers & Humans

Tue, 13 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Development along the California coastline is having an impact on Western Sandpipers and other shorebirds.

Shorebirds: Western Sandpipers Migration

Mon, 12 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Western Sandpipers are in a "frequent flyer" class of their own.

Shorebirds: Montague Island

Fri, 09 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Once a year on Alaska's Montague Island, whole populations of shorebirds feast on a plethora of herring eggs.

Firewalking: Music

Thu, 08 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Celebrants of Saints Constantine and Helen enter a trance state as they dance over coals.

Firewalking: Physics

Wed, 07 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

There's a physics-based explanation for why villagers in Northern Greece can walk on fiery coals and not burn their feet.

Swifts in the Chimney

Tue, 06 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Twice a year thousands of Vaux's Swifts use an elementary school's furnace as a migratory stopover.

Return of the Wood Thrush

Mon, 05 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

The annual return of the wood thrush holds a special meaning for some Pulse of the Planet listeners in upstate New York.

Early Spring: Marmot's Choice

Fri, 02 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Marmots risk starvation because of misleading cues that spring has arrived in the Rocky Mountains.

Early Spring: Unexpected Conditions

Thu, 01 May 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Warming weather and increased snowfall send mixed signals to migrating species.

Early Spring: Harbingers

Wed, 30 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

A broad range of species of plants are blooming up to 46 days earlier now than they did three decades ago. The reason, biologists say, is global climate change.

Wildlife Veterinarian: Elephant Challenge

Tue, 29 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Locating an elephant in the rainforest and sedating it for a physical examination is no easy feat.

Wildlife Veterinarian: Elephant Radio Collar

Mon, 28 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Scientists who wanted to study the migration habits of central African elephants put radio tags on them to monitor their movements.

Wildlife Veterinarian: Gorilla Exam

Fri, 25 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

And you thought you were a tough patient? Find out what it's like to treat a male gorilla.

Wildlife Veterinarian: Gorilla Health

Thu, 24 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Wildlife is susceptible to many of the same infectious diseases that afflict humans.

Wildlife Veterinarian: Profile

Wed, 23 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

William Karesh is a wildlife field veterinarian . His patients range from anacondas in Venezuela to elephants in Central Africa.

Methane: From Cows

Tue, 22 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Cow manure is now being used as a source for electricity.

Hydropower: Learning from Beavers

Mon, 21 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Beaver dams have inspired scientists to rethink their approach to hydropower.

Hydropower: Challenged

Fri, 18 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

With both humans and fish being adversely effected by conventional dams, a scientist has taken a fresh look at hydropower design.

Bush Meat: Mandrills

Thu, 17 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

The mandrill is just one of the species that is put at risk by the "bush meat" trade.

Bush Meat: Solutions

Wed, 16 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Cooperation from logging companies can help prevent professional hunters from harvesting forest wildlife.

Bush Meat: Forestry

Tue, 15 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

The progression of logging and road-building within tropical forests has contributed to the harvesting of animals for human consumption.

Bush Meat: Intro

Mon, 14 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Due to the trade of wild animal meat, much of the fauna in the world's forests are being wiped out.

Table Tennis: Speed Glue

Fri, 11 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Twenty years ago, the sport of table tennis was changed forever - thanks to the chemistry of glue.

Table Tennis: Intro

Thu, 10 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Table tennis is not just a recreational activity, but an intense competition played at lightning speed. Officials are pondering how might they slow the game down?

Carpenter Bees: Sneaky

Wed, 09 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Some female carpenter bees engage in artifice and deception.

Carpenter Bees: Social

Tue, 08 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Carpenter bees are among the more solitary bees, sometimes living one to a nest.

Carpenter Bees: Nest

Mon, 07 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PDT

Bees are resourceful multi-talented insects, and some are skilled carpenters.

Fossils & Myths: Ancient Paleontology

Fri, 04 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PST

There is a new theory that thousands of years ago, the Greeks were analyzing remains of ancient animals, and creating myths about them.

Fossils & Myths: Intro

Thu, 03 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PST

There is now evidence that creatures in Greek mythology were not entirely mythical.

Cueva De Villa Luz: Extreme Cave

Wed, 02 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PST

There is a cave in southeastern Mexico whose thriving ecosystem is based on bacteria which live on sulfur.

Cueva De Villa Luz: Ecology

Tue, 01 Apr 2003 00:00:00 PST

If the rotten egg smell of the Hydrogen Sulfide gas doesn't get to you, then maybe the bats, spiders, or the dripping sulfuric acid will.

Cueva De Villa Luz

Mon, 31 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Every Spring in Mexico's Cueva de Villa Luz, descendants of Zoque and Mayan Indians hold a rather remarkable ceremony.

American Toads: Cross the Road

Fri, 28 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Why did the toad cross the road? Turns out he had a very compelling reason.

American Toads: Birdlike Trill

Thu, 27 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

They may not be as visible or as pretty as Robins, but American Toads produce some of the most melodious sounds of Spring.

The Bayaka: Glowing Spirits

Wed, 26 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Glowing spirits visit the Bayaka's nighttime ceremonies.

The Bayaka: Boyobi

Tue, 25 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Before embarking on a hunt, the Bayaka must first convene with the spirits of the forest.

The Bayaka: Net Hunt

Mon, 24 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

The Bayaka, hunter-gatherers living in the rainforest of Central Africa, prepare for a community hunt.

Natural Radio: Chorus

Fri, 21 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Naturally occuring radio waves provide a way to listen to solar flares.


Thu, 20 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

The first day of spring marks the start of an ancient holiday.

Noruz: Customs

Wed, 19 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Noruz means "new day" and it's celebrated with new clothes, gift-giving and bonfires.

Phagwah: Meaning

Tue, 18 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

The most joyful festival of the Indo-Caribbean culture is in early spring. Phagwah is a celebration of the rebirth of nature and the spirit of young love.

Natural Radio: Whistlers

Mon, 17 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Radio waves created by lightning can be heard from halfway around the planet.

Koukery Fertility Festival: History

Fri, 14 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Bulgarian villagers supposedly locked up the local priests for a day to carry on with the celebration of Koukery.

CROWS: Uncommonly Cooperative

Thu, 13 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Come nesting season, families of crows do something relatively few other species of birds do - raise their young cooperatively.

Noruz: Triumph of Tradition

Wed, 12 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Although the government of Iran tried to suppress it, the venerable holiday of Noruz continues to be one of that nation's most popular celebrations.

Phagwah: Parade

Tue, 11 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

In Queens, a festival takes place at the time of the full moon every March. Participants celebrate with "call and response" style singing, and the playing of indigenous drums and cymbals.

Phagwah: Powder

Mon, 10 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

In an Indo-Caribbean community an ancient festival of spring is celebrated with colored baby powder.

Listener Initiative

Fri, 07 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Our listeners are invited to share their seasonal observances on our new toll-free number, 1-877-PULSE99.

Greater Sandhill Cranes: Courtship

Thu, 06 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Cranes mate for life and are models of responsibility, discipline, and vigilance.

Greater Sandhill Cranes: Crops

Wed, 05 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Colorado's Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuge has helped keep migrating cranes away from the fields of local farmers.

Cajun Mardi Gras: The Song

Tue, 04 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

In Basile, LA, when a band of masked Mardi Gras revelers comes to your door, here's the song they'll likely be singing.

Greater Sandhill Cranes: Fattening Up

Mon, 03 Mar 2003 00:00:00 PST

Greater Sandhill Cranes come to Colorado's San Luis Valley to get in shape for their summer breeding grounds.

Cajun Mardi Gras: Elton Run

Fri, 28 Feb 2003 00:00:00 PST

Most of us know about Mardi Gras from the famous festivities in New Orleans. But in rural Louisiana , Cajuns celebrate the holiday in a style all their own.

Cajun Mardi Gras: In Disguise

Thu, 27 Feb 2003 00:00:00 PST

As Cajuns in Louisiana celebrate Mardi Gras this week, revelers disguise themselves and beg for food and money from their neighbors, to support a communal gumbo.

Cajun Mardi Gras: Tickling

Wed, 26 Feb 2003 00:00:00 PST

There are many ways to celebrate Mardi Gras. In the rural Cajun communities of south Louisiana, it's organized mayhem.

Cajun Mardi Gras: Biggest Day

Tue, 25 Feb 2003 00:00:00 PST

When dozens of people in bright costumes, masks and pointy hats are riding around in flatbed trucks raising a ruckus, you can bet you're in Cajun Louisiana for Mardi Gras.

Cajun Mardi Gras: Feast

Mon, 24 Feb 2003 00:00:00 PST

Mardi Gras is a holiday with its roots in ancient European traditions. There are good reasons why it happens at this time of year.

Listener Initiative

Fri, 21 Feb 2003 00:00:00 PST

Our listeners are invited to share their seasonal observances on our new toll-free number, 1-877-PULSE99.

Ecuador: Cloud Forest

Thu, 20 Feb 2003 00:00:00 PST

In times of drought, cloudforests, which support the same incredible diversity as rainforests, thrive almost entirely on thick blankets of fog.

Renaissance Chemist: Ideas of Beauty

Wed, 19 Feb 2003 00:00:00 PST

Who says there are no more Renaissance Men? Meet a Nobel prize-winning chemist who is also an accomplished poet.

Red Squirrel:Hemlock

Tue, 18 Feb 2003 00:00:00 PST

One pesky insect has created a destructive chain reaction among North American hemlock trees.

Red Squirrel: Sweet Treat

Mon, 17 Feb 2003 00:00:00 PST

Red Squirrels may be nature's original harvesters of Maple sugar.