Bonnie Stevens

Brain Food - Reporter/Host
Bonnie Stevens

By studying the relationship between minerals and microbes on Earth, scientists hope to learn more about the environment on Mars. The recent discovery of high concentrations of manganese on the Red Planet may suggest the signature of life. Now, a group of scientists is studying similar manganese-rich rock samples near Flagstaff to try to make a biological connection.


An elusive bat in the forests of Nicaragua has caught the attention of researchers at Northern Arizona University. The Vampyrum spectrum is the largest bat in the Americas, with a three foot wingspan. Wildlife biologist Carol Chambers collects data on the rare animal. She says habitat loss and human disturbance make them particularly susceptible to population decline.


NAU

Students at Northern Arizona University are part of an experiment in virtual reality learning. They're using high=tech goggles and applications to transport themselves into ancient cultures and inside molecules for a better understanding of how our senses help us learn. 


Courtesy

The spring equinox is one of two days a year when the equator lines up with the center of the sun, creating a balance of day and night. Historically – for many indigenous people of the world – this celestial event marks a time for renewal, emergence of life and planting of crops. 


Derek Shields/myurbanfarmscape.com

Kids love to play in the dirt. So Flagstaff ecologist Anita Antoninka is channeling that love into learning… using it as a way to teach kids about the effects of climate change on the earth’s biocrust. Today, she’s working with a seventh grade science class at Northland Preparatory Academy to see how a warming planet affects moss.


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