Episode 36: Lions and Tigers and Bears (they say “oh my!”)

Today on Bugs and Stuff Podcast we are talking about something Cari and I have been wanting to discuss for a while and that is predators and why humans hate predators? Part of it most likely stems from days long ago when we were more likely to be on the menu, but at this point humans are by far the most deadly thing in the forest.

We begin this episode by discussing how predators are portrayed in the media. Have you noticed that whenever herbivores are the starts of the show they are anthropomorphized but any predators are often displayed as dumb or other. Think Land Before Time’s t-rexs.

Moving forward, we discuss how our actions removing the world of predators has major implications for the ecosystems. Deer are considered one of the most destructive creatures in the forest at this point. The Nature Conservancy likens their impact to that of invasive insects as they consume many small shrubs and trees making tree regeneration difficult.

It is also interesting to dissect how the media has portrayed predators, especially sharks. The creation of Jaws has lead to the slaughter of sharks. People often are so afraid of sharks they advocate for their irradiations around the globe, but we rarely get a peak into how interesting these creatures are. We just see them as man eating machines when in reality most of the attacks are due to sharks mistakingly biting humans.

I won’t go much further because really our podcast is much more entertaining than this blog post, but I will leave you with this one thing. If we should be afraid of anything it should be humans. We are by far the most destructive predator on Earth. Rather than focusing on other animal predators, perhaps we should curb our own blood thirsty behavior.

Episode 35: Invasion of the Buggy Snatchers

Hey everyone, we are back with another episode for you this week. We talk about invasive insects this week and honestly it gets a little depressing, but I think its definitely worth a listen. We talk about invasive species in general and why some invasive species are well known by the public while others are under everyone’s radar.

Of course with invasive species comes the discussion about extinction. If you’re a biologist we would love to know how you talk about extinction with non-scientists around you. It is easy to feel very doom and gloom about the subject but this mentality does not always facilitate effective communication.

We discuss the ambrosia beetle, hemlock wooly adelgid, and the very infamous emerald ash borer. If you are interested in hearing more about the Emerald Ash Borer check out this episode.

Also, did you know plants are much smarter than you may think? They actually send messages to one another through an underground network of roots and fungus. The RadioLab episode about this is amazing and you should go listen to it.

We would love to hear your thoughts about this subject and how you talk to people about invasive species whether they be insects or plants.

And as always, we love you, we’ll see you, goodbye ❤




Episode 34: Life After Graduate School Gets Real

Hopefully you didn’t forget about us during our little month long break. We really needed to take April to get ourselves together and work on a few things. Cari was busy teaching 3rd and 4th graders as well as undergraduates ecology. I was busy getting my footing at my new job.

Together we also put together a lesson plan for Tanya over at Science Journal for Kids, which is a great resource for teachers out there. Especially on national teacher week. If you would like to learn more about Science Journal for Kids you can check out our episode that we did with Tanya.

Today we are bringing you an episode all about what happens after graduate school from our perspective.  From our defenses all the way to the point we are at now, we discuss our career and life goals and Cari gives us a little insight into her debate: to do a PhD or not to do a PhD.

If you have been listening to us for a while thanks for sticking around during our break, and if you are new here welcome! We’d love to hear what you think. You can show us some love over at our kofi  or just by sending us a sweet email.

And as always, we love you, we’ll see you, goodbye!


Our favorite episodes!

We’re taking a quick break for April to get our lives together, but that doesn’t mean you have to stop listening! Today, we want to share with you our favorite episodes thus far.

Caitlin’s top 3:

  1. Episode 14 – Are you still a scientists?
  2. Episode 15 – Career Perspectives Part 2
  3. Episode 33 – Aquatic Insects

Cari’s top 3:

  1. Episode 11 – Attention educators: Science Journal For Kids
  2. Episode 18 – The Junior Academy of AMAZING
  3. Episode 7 – Outreach

Honestly, it was really hard for us to pick our top 3’s, so I hope you agree that they are awesome. Remember we’re planning to submit Bugs&Stuff to a contest, so be sure to let us know your favorite episode(s)! We’d love to include your favorites as well as our to best represent what Bugs&Stuff is all about.

You can comment below you favorite episode, you can email us at bugsandstuffpodcast@gmail.com, tweet us at @bugsandstuffpod, facebook message us, or whatever else you’d like to do to let us know!

Thanks for listening! You’re the best! Have a wonderful April! Love you, see you, goodbye!

Episode 33: Aquatic Insects

Today we spent time talking with PhD student and fellow bug lover, Megann Harlow. She is a student at the University of North Texas studying how aquatic insects can help us understand our water quality.

How can insects tell us about water quality? In a nutshell, certain insects live in cleaner water compared to other insects. Megann, and her lab, collect aquatic insects from water bodies on the Dallas Fort Worth Airport land, which makes up many watersheds. They then identify the insects and compare them to natural areas around the area to give the water a quality scale. We also talk a little about what it’s like being a mom and getting a PhD and Science Communication.

Megann goes into much deeper detail on our podcast so be sure to click the link. If you are interested check out her Twitter: @megannmae4 and Instagram: @megann_mae.

Finally, if you enjoyed this episode and want to support us check out our Ko-fi page.

We’ll see you, we love you, goodbye!

Episode 32: People Who’ve Inspired us During our 25 Years

Today Caitlin and I celebrate our February birthdays with you by telling you about the people and experiences that made us want to be ecologists and science communicators. They’re all very important in making us the people we are today and wanted to share them with you! Thank you for listening!

Just to list a few:

  1. Dr. Shannon Pelini
  2. Caitlin’s parents. And mine.
  3. Mrs. Lowther
  4. Caitlin’s arboretum fam
  5. Walking with dinosaurs
  6. The Crocodile hunter – Steve Irwin
  7. Miss Frizzle and the Magic School Bus
  8.  Dr. Paige Jarreau – From The Lab Bench
  9. Michelle Barboza-Ramirez – Femmes of STEM


Please rate us on Apple Podcasts. Leave us your comments or send us emails! We’d love to hear who your people and experiences are! And if you’re interested in supporting us, you can do that here on our Kofi: ko-fi.com/bugsandstuff

We appreciate all of you and we love you, we’ll see you, goodbye!

Episode 31 – Glow little Glow Worm, glow

In this short episode, we’re talking about Glow Worms! These amazing little creatures have some awesome tricks to catch their food!

First and foremost, here is the Ant-Man and The Wasp trailer. You DEFINITELY need to check it out!


In case you’ve never seen Glow Worms before, check them out here. They’re pretty awesome.

Here is the Railroad Worm we were also talking about.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts! If you’re interested in supporting us, you can do that here!