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Recording of Why birds are (figuratively) cooler than you

Thanks everyone who came to Julia York’s fascinating talk about birds yesterday! I’m now convinced that birds are dinosaurs, and Austin’s tiny dinosaurs–grackles–are indeed pretty cool! If you weren’t able to attend, check out recording of her presentation and Q&A. And check out our YouTube channel for recordings of our past virtual Science Under the Stars lectures!

This was our final presentation for the Fall 2021 semester. Join us again in February for our Spring semester. Keep an eye here on our website and our Facebook page for updates on our upcoming lineup of speakers and information about our planned move to in-person talks again! Happy Holidays!

Virtual SUTS! Why birds are (figuratively) cooler than you

Welcome to our final Science Under the Virtual Stars of the fall semester! Join us Thursday, December 9th at 7pm CT for our very own co-leader Julia York’s fascinating presentation on birds. Learn how they breathe (yep, differently than us!), their relationship to the dinosaurs of yore (#BirdsAreDinosaurs), and how cool Austin’s grackles really are! See below for some fun bird and dinosaur activities and a link to our virtual natural history tour of Brackenridge Field Laboratory. The live lecture and Q&A will be held over Zoom–link below!

Birds & Dinos, oh my! Click the link above for bird and dinosaur activities for kids of all ages!

Tour of Brackenridge Field Laboratory (13 min)

Archaeopteryx by James Reece, (c)Australian Museum

Zoom Information for live lecture and Q&A, December 9th at 7:00pm CST:

Topic: Virtual SUTS! Why birds are (figuratively) cooler than you
Time: Dec 9, 2021 07:00 PM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting
https://utexas.zoom.us/j/99210676268

Meeting ID: 992 1067 6268

December 9th, Julia York

Why birds are (figuratively) cooler than you

Please note that for this event, both the lecture and Q&A will be live and recorded.

Birds are dinosaurs and everyone should be talking about it. If you think about it, dinosaurs are around us all the time yet we don’t often take time to appreciate that fact. Birds are found on every continent, every ocean, every city; they can fly very high, very far, and for long periods of time. Join us at the final Science Under the Stars of 2021 to talk about the evolutionary history of birds, how they breathe and why that matters, fun and interesting bird species, and perhaps even a few new facts about the disdained grackles.

Science Under the Stars has gone virtual! This semester all SUTS activities will be online, but we encourage you to participate outdoors under the stars in your backyard! (If wifi allows for it, of course.) This month’s schedule is as follows:

  • December 8th: Links to the kids activities will be posted here and on our Facebook page.
  • December 9th, 7:00pm CST: Live online lecture and Q&A with the speaker! Please note, you must have a Zoom account to access the talk. You can get a free account on Zoom’s website.

Zoom info: https://utexas.zoom.us/j/99210676268

Meeting ID: 992 1067 6268

Science Under the Stars is a free public outreach lecture series based in Austin, Texas.

More Neighborhood Science!

Science Under the Stars has expanded to include the Austin Public Library! At Neighborhood Science, previous SUTS speakers will present at different library branches around the city a couple times a month.


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Two species of flamingo on a lake in Africa (Torres et al., 2014)

April 9: Chris Torres – Evolution of the flamingo’s smile

Flamingos are some of the most iconic and recognizable animals in the world… but where did they come from and why do they look so funny? After centuries of struggle, biologists are finally beginning to make sense of how the bizarre flamingo lifestyle might have evolved. Come listen to the story of flamingo evolution, as told by one of the guys who helped piece it all together, and learn about how long flamingos have been around, what their relatives are like, and what they looked like before they turned so pink.
  • April 9, 7pm at the Howson Branch Library, 2500 Exposition Blvd, Austin, TX 78703 **This talk will be held outdoors, so bring a chair!

     


 

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Tree frogs do not only live in trees. Photo: D. Correa

May 14: Decio Correa – All about frogs (and toads!)

What is the difference between a frog and a toad? Why do frogs call? Is it true that frogs are disappearing? Are frogs poisonous? What are tadpoles? Get the answers to these and many other frog FAQs while you learn more about one of the most amazing creatures on Earth! You will be guided through the life of frogs (and toads!), from the early larval stages until they metamorphose into jumping animals with all different colors, shapes, sizes, and sounds!
  • May 14, 7pm at the Howson Branch Library, 2500 Exposition Blvd, Austin, TX 78703 **This talk will be held outdoors, so bring a chair!

Neighborhood Science Talks

Science Under the Stars has expanded to include the Austin Public Library! At Neighborhood Science, previous SUTS speakers will present at different library branches around the city a couple times a month. Stay tuned for more updates!


mantis shrimp

March 28: Emily Rees – “The Science of Superheroes” 

If you could have any superpower, what would it be? Would you choose super-strength? The ability to leap over tall buildings in a single bound? Invisibility? Mind-control? These ‘superpowers’ that we see in movies and comic books actually occur in a variety of different animals! Come out to Neighborhood Science to learn about the invisible lurker of the ocean, the fastest punch among animals, and the heavy lifters of the animal kingdom.
  • March 28, 7pm at the Twin Oaks Branch, 1800 S 5th St, Austin, TX 78704


 

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A singing mouse trills in the cloud forest, declaring its presence. credit Bret Pasch

April 25: Tracy Burkhard – “As quiet as a mouse? (Not singing mice!)”

“As quiet as a mouse” refers to people who don’t make a peep–but contrary to the popular saying, many mice want to be heard, and some are actually quite loud! Mice–and mammals in general–use all kinds of vocal sounds to communicate with each other in a variety of contexts. How do mammals make vocalizations? What are mice are saying to each other? And can mice really sing? Come to this lecture to find out answers to these questions and more!
  • April 25, 7pm at the Twin Oaks Branch, 1800 S 5th St, Austin, TX 78704