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Biology

The Mystery of Crab Boxing

 The Mystery of Crab Boxing

Boxer crabs stand out amid their crustacean brethren due to their amazing tool use -- a mutualistic relationship between these tiny crabs and the living sea anemones they employ as weapons. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian look at a pair of studies that expand on their amazing use of weapons. See more »

The Body Illithid: Science of the Mind Flayers

 The Body Illithid: Science of the Mind Flayers

If Dungeons and Dragons has ever touched your life, then you’re probably familiar with the tentacled, brain-sucking Illithids. Even in a fantasy world so rich in bizarre monstrosities, the Mind Flayers stand out as shockingly alien. Yet the Illithids are not without their parallels in the natural world -- and even in human civilization. Join Robert and Christian for a science-grounded look at everyone’s favorite Underdark horror. See more »

Monster of the Week: The Illithid 'Mind Flayer'

 Monster of the Week: The Illithid 'Mind Flayer'

Robert Lamb discusses the Ilithid 'Mind Flayers' of Dungeons and Dragons within the context of real-world biology, computing and human psychology. See more »

I Was Eaten by a Giant Spider

 I Was Eaten by a Giant Spider

The spiders that occur in nature are not a creeping menace -- rather, they are a true invisible ally of humankind. But if one were to grow to 1950s sci-fi proportions, even the arachnophiliacs among us would have to admit we had a problem on our hands. How do spiders eat their prey, and what would it be like if a human being were consumed by an impossibly large spider? Robert and Joe explore in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. See more »

Will-o'-the-Wisp: A Light in the Swamp

 Will-o'-the-Wisp: A Light in the Swamp

There was a time when strange lights appeared in the marshlands. Commoners might have known the eerie luminescence as “Will-o’-the-Wisp” or “Hinky Punk,” while the learned pondered the mysteries of “Ignis Fatuus.” Superstitions aside, what natural phenomenon was at work here, before accounts of false fires in the night largely vanished from history? In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe search for answers. See more »

Monster of the Week: The Gentlemen

 Monster of the Week: The Gentlemen

Buffy fans won't soon forget the Gentlemen, but just how do these noise-adverse, heart-snatching demons match up to natural world biology? Find out... See more »

Weird Mushrooms!

 Weird Mushrooms!

Join Robert and Christian as they crack open the sacred book of the shroom and examine a half-dozen examples of magnificently weird mushrooms. See more »

Leaping Mullets! Flying Fish! Breaching Sharks!

 Leaping Mullets! Flying Fish! Breaching Sharks!

Fish belong in the water, right? What business do they have leaping out of their world and into ours? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the surprisingly fascinating, dangerous and mysterious world of leaping, jumping and gliding fish. From skewering swordfish and breaching sharks to the alleged urethra-bound candiru, nature provides more than a few mind-blowing specimens of note. See more »

Coral Sex in the Sea (With Guest Marah J. Hardt)

 Coral Sex in the Sea (With Guest Marah J. Hardt)

Sure coral reefs are rich, vibrant ecosystems, but did you know they also have a kinky side? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, “Sex in the Sea” author Dr. Marah J. Hardt returns to chat about coral reproduction and the role this vital, threatened organism plays in our world. See more »

Pieces of a Human: The Science of Artificial Organs

 Pieces of a Human: The Science of Artificial Organs

Imagine a future in which much-needed transplant organs are printed on demand, grown within the bodies of humanized animals or plucked fresh and dripping from the organ vats. It’s the age of artificially grown organs and yes, gentle listener, we already have one foot planted within this amazing, Frankenstein-tinged world. Join Robert and Christian for a discussion of artificial organs in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. See more »