MTPR

Arts & Culture

Author interviews, food, natural history, poetry, and more from "The Write Question", "The Food Guys", "Field Notes", "Home Ground Radio", "Front Row Center", and "Reflections West".

Bug Bytes: Evolution And 'The Predicted One'

Jul 15, 2019
Xanthopan morganii praedicta moth
kqedquest, https://www.flickr.com/photos/kqedquest/3256354461/ (CC-BY-NC-2 [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/])

When it comes to the topic of evolution Charles Darwin is "the man." In 1859, his book, On the Origin of Species provided compelling evidence that transformed the theory of evolution into widely accepted fact.

Evolution is the process by which an organism changes over time to better adapt to its environment. This theory includes the idea of coevolution — where two or more species evolve together for their mutual benefit.

Flickr user, Speckled Jim. (CC BY-NC 2.0)

The Food Guys, Jon Jackson and Greg Patent, discuss the 2018 book, Pandora's Potatoes: The Worst GMOs, by Caius Rommens, former director of biotech research and development at the potato processing and marketing company, J.R. Simplot. Rommens, a genetic engineer, developed Simplot's genetically-modified potatoes, which were approved for commercial planting in the U.S. in 2014.

"Think Goodfellas with a screenplay by Donald E. Westlake, set in the landscape of A River Runs through It―a unique and tasty treat for crime-fiction fans."―Booklist (starred review)

StarDate’s Sandy Wood To Retire

Jul 11, 2019
Sandy Wood, the popular and charismatic announcer of the StarDate radio program, is retiring after 28 years on the air.
Courtesy Stardate

Sandy Wood, the popular and charismatic announcer of the StarDate radio program, is retiring after 28 years on the air. Her final episode will air July 16.

Treasure State stars Gary Cooper and Myrna Loy found unparalleled success during the Golden Age of Hollywood. For more than a century, Montana has supplied a rich vein of entertainment and personality--from daredevils to dancers and even mimes. Born in Miles City in 1895, comedian Gilbert "Pee Wee" Holmes played sidekick to such stars as Tom Mix. One-time Butte resident Julian Eltinge went on to become America's first famous female impersonator.

Bug Bytes: Centipede Or Millipede?

Jul 7, 2019
Millipede and centipede
Shutterstock

So you’re digging in the garden and see something crawling in the freshly turned soil. With its many legs, it’s clearly not a worm. But what is it? A millipede or a centipede?

Both have long, segmented bodies and lots of legs. But despite these visual similarities, they could not be more different in terms of diet and behavior.

Birds Of A Feather Flock Together ... To Bathe In Ants?

Jul 7, 2019
A blackbird sunning ... or is it anting?
Hornbeam Arts (CC-BY-NC-2.0) https://www.flickr.com/photos/hornbeam/9272137714

Anting is a bizarre form of bird behavior that has often been observed but is not well understood. It typically involves a bird picking up ants and rubbing or jabbing them into the feathers, especially under the wings and tail. The action is so rapid and vigorous that the bird will often knock itself over onto the ground.

Bug Bytes: Aphid Ranchers

Jul 1, 2019
Ants tending to their aphid herd.
Missoula Insectarium

If you’ve ever noticed a group of ants milling about on a leaf or the stem of a plant and wondered why, take a closer look. You might only be seeing half of what’s going on.

While they lack pickup trucks, fencing pliers, and other tools of the trade of their human counterparts, these ants are likely ranchers. But instead of cows, they’re carefully tending their herd of aphids.

Creating A Backyard Banquet For Butterflies

Jul 1, 2019
Keenan Adams, U.S.F.W.S. (PD)

I recently listened to a Field Note about the joys of designing a backyard landscape for wildlife and birds. As you’re scheming and poring over seed catalogs, consider the smaller winged creatures in your plans. Butterflies not only bring their own delight to a garden, but butterfly gardens have real conservation value. A garden that’s free of pesticides and full of nectar sources and food plants can become habitat for dozens of brightly-colored flitting jewels.

Recipe: Salmoriglio Sauce

Jun 30, 2019
Marco Verch. CC-BY-2.0 foto.wuestenigel.com

Salmoriglio (sal-more-EEL-ee-yo) is an Italian lemon and olive oil sauce, marinade and dipping condiment for fish, chicken and practically any vegetable. Once you make it, you’ll wonder why you'd never heard of it before. That’s what happened to "Food Guy" Greg Patent: he lived for an entire year in Italy without ever learning of salmoriglio.

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