BBC Podcasts presents “The Infinite Monkey Cage,” an irreverently clever series diving into scientific topics. Since 2009, the podcast has been going strong with over 150 episodes running less than 45 minutes on average, hosted by Brian Cox, Robin Ince, and a slew of guests for a new season this summer.
In a recent episode, the hosts were joined by Ted Lasso‘s Brendan Hunt, Suzanne Simard (Professor of forest ecology and author of The Mother Tree), and botanist Mark Spencer to discuss how trees and plants communicate and what on earth they’re saying!
Suzanne discovered trees’ “wood wide web of communication” that helps humans better understand forests. The network includes fungi, trees, and plants, allowing them to share information and combat predators, which can be analyzed as a type of intelligence. Brian and Robin learned how this can change how we view plants, manage forests, and learn trees’ secrets.
Other episodes this season looked at black holes with Eric Idle, Dr. Netta Engelhardt, and Dr. Janna Levin. Space scientist Carolun Porco, comedian/writer Katy Brand, and astronauts Nicole Stott and Chris Hadfield joined an episode all about our planet.
The bats v. flies episode pitted these two critter groups against each other in a fun face-off with fly expert Dr. Erica McAlister and bat expert Prof. Kate Jones. They also talked about how the world would not be the same without these creatures, and Dave Gorman stopped by to weigh in.
Comedian/musician Tim Minchin and oceanographers Diva Amon and Jon Copley talked about great ocean mysteries. Diva and Jon shared some of their adventures from the sea’s depths and tried to convince Tim to join an upcoming expedition.
A recent bonus episode looked at math with Sara Pascoe and number experts Prof Hannah Fry, Matt Parker, and Prof. David Speigelhalter.
We recommend this series for listeners of “No Such Thing As a Fish,” “Science Rules! with Bill Nye,” and “Ologies with Alie Ward.” Tune in weekly for new episodes of “The Infinite Monkey Cage” wherever you listen to your favorite shows.