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Duration:07:15
Uploaded:2013-02-13
Last sync:2017-05-22 12:30
Featuring Katherine Green, Content and Social Media Manager for SciShow and also Hank's wife, and Quigley, the brush-tailed bettong or woylie.

In this episode, Katherine shows Hank some cute wild cats, and then they meet Quigley and Jessi from Animal Wonders and talk about woylie conservation in Australia.

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Check out Animal Wonders Inc. at http://www.animalwonders.org or on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/user/anmlwndrs
(Intro plays)

Hank: Hello, and welcome to today's edition of the SciShow Talk Show.  Today joining us in the studio is Katherine Green, who among other things, is our social media manager.  She uploads the videos and goes on the Twitter and the Facebooks and all of those things.  She is also my wife. Yes.

Katherine: I am also his wife.

Hank: Hi, thank you for doing this.

Katherine: You're welcome!

Hank: Today Katherine is gonna share with us some interesting things that she's bringing inside of her mind, and then we're gonna look at a really cool animal.

Katherine: Yeah, I'm excited!  So actually, uh, you know that I like animals.

Hank: I do know that.

Katherine: Right, and I have maybe a favorite one.

Hank: Your favorite animal in the world is our cat, Cameo.

Katherine: Yes, that's correct. But she is also a type of animal.

Hank: That is your favorite type of animal, which is the cat.

Katherine: Correct. So, I thought I would just come in and talk about cats with you.

Hank: Let's just type in cats to Google here and see what happens.

Katherine: Um, and actually I don't really want to talk about lolcats right now.

Hank: Okay.

Katherine: I want to talk about wild cats.

Hank: Wild cats.

Katherine: And specifically the many species of cats that are in the family Felidae. They first emerged on the earth about 25 million years ago.

Hank: Okay.

Katherine: So they're-

Hank: established

Katherine: Pretty well established.  They got a good hold on it here. And 60% of the species that exist on earth today were estimated to have originated in the last million years.

Hank: Oh wow!

Katherine: So there are a lot of-

Hank: Extinct cats.

Katherine: Extinct cats. Cats that have gone extinct since the 25 million years ago emergence, which is sad.

Hank: 'Cause all of those cute cats! We're never gonna get to see them.

Katherine: I mean, some of them probably would have eaten us pretty hard core so- Mostly, a lot of the ones that are left are actually much smaller.

Hank: Are they very cute?

Katherine: So many cute, so so cute, so many cutes.  I mean, one of my favorites is this one.

Hank: Pallas's cat!

Katherine: Pallas's cat.

Hank: It's like a puffball!

Katherine: It is really really cute.

Hank: Why is it so cold?

Katherine: Well, it lives in the Rocky Steps in the area around the Caspian Sea, so in northern Kazakhstan and Russia.  So, it's cold in Russia.

Hank: I would be fluffy if I lived there.

Katherine: It looks like one of those hats that the Russians wear. Maybe that's where they got the idea. This is an interesting one. The caracal.

Hank: The caracal. That is a crazy lookin thing. Check out your freaking huge ear tufts!

Katherine: Amazingly huge ear tufts.

Hank: Those are big ear tufts.

Katherine: I don't know.

Hank: 'Cause. 'Cause the ladies like it.

Katherine: Yeah, so it's got big ears to start out with and then it's got these huge ear tufts.

Hank: "Just to emphasize how big my ears are."

Katherine: Maybe! You know, it's a desert animal so it has big ears.

Hank: Right, it's good to have big ears when you're a desert animal.

Katherine: To cool, to help it regulate its temperature. And then, the last one is the sand cat.

Hank: The sand cat!

Katherine: Felis Margarita.

Hank: Awwwww! It's cute!

Katherine: Yup! Just livin' in the sand dunes, eatin-

Hank: Eatin' rats, tiny mice. Probably tiny-

Katherine: Maybe insects that it comes across

Hank: And yeah, probably insects.

Katherine: Probably a lot of insects.  It's interesting that it lives in the desert because it has to be able to tolerate extreme temperatures, so it doesn't have super small ears or super big ears.

Hank: Thank you for sharing all of the cats with us, Katherine.

Katherine: Of course!

Hank: Now it's time to see a real animal in the studio.

Katherine: Ooh, let's do it!

Hank: Let's see a real animal in the studio!

Katherine: Bring it on!

Hank: Here is a brush tailed bettong and Jessi! I'm not - what is the name of this animal?

Jessi: This is Quigley. These guys are from Australia, and they at one time they covered about three-fourths of the whole continent of Australia.  And they did really well. They breed pretty proficiently, about maybe three or four babies a year. Well, then humans decided to introduce the red fox.  It really decimated their population. Then biologists got the hint and they said, "Alright, well, let's get rid of the foxes."  So actually they got rid of all the foxes and these guys made a great come back.  It was actually a huge success story in the 1960's. It was huge news.  And then their population started falling again, and they did a bunch or research and they figured out, they think it's a combination of feral cats - which is a domestic cat let loose, has babies, those babies become basically wild - so they're preying on them but they are also spreading a parasite called toxoplasma. And it's normal for cats to have, not normal for humans or bettongs to have.  What's happening is, it's affecting their brain and they don't register that a predator is coming after them, so they are really easy prey.

Katherine: For the cats.

Hank: I've heard that this maybe actual symbiosis between toxoplasma - the parasite and the cat.

Jessi: It goes in a cycle that way.

Hank: And that there's some research indicating that crazy cat ladies are crazy cat ladies because they're infected with this parasite. Cats.

Katherine: So cute. So destructive.

Hank: Yeah, they're hungry.

Jessi: Since these guys are critically endangered, we searched everywhere to find a female. So we found Babette and Babette's a female.  I'm gonna go ahead and put Quigley away.

Hank: Bye!

Katherine: Night, night!

Jessi: Babette and Quigley didn't really hit it off at first, but after a while they started hanging out.

Katherine: It was an arranged marriage.

Jessi: I know, I know!

Hank: It takes some time.

Katherine: Yeah. It's a lot to ask, of anyone!

Jessi: After we waited, this little guy popped out.

Hank: About how old is he?

Jessi: He is, well they spend about three to four months in the pouch.

Hank: Right, marsupial birthdays are a little fuzzy.

Jessi: It is. It's really hard to tell, so yeah at about three or four months-

Hank: Is it the exit from the womb or is it the exit from the-

Jessi: the pouch? Yeah! He's still drinking milk, so he's actually - we pulled him to finish hand feeding him. So, he's been out of the pouch for about a month.

Hank: Ah, man! You are cute! You have a lot riding on your shoulders, little animal. I'm sorry about that. The responsibility must be a little intense, but with great cuteness comes great responsibility.  Thank you guys for comin in!

Thank you for joining us for this edition of the SciShow Talk Show! I want to thank my wife Katherine for coming out and joining us.

Katherine: Well thanks for having me.

Hank: What a pleasure. And of course, thanks to the team over at Animal Wonders for bringing in their amazing animals. We'll see you next time.
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