Bullaki Science Podcast

20. Exozoology | Bullaki Science Podcast with Arik Kershenbaum

March 29, 2022 Bullaki Season 1 Episode 20
Bullaki Science Podcast
20. Exozoology | Bullaki Science Podcast with Arik Kershenbaum
Show Notes

Dr Arik Kershenbaum is a zoologist, a Fellow and Director of Studies at Girton College at the University of Cambridge, working on animal communication and the information content in highly social and cooperative species, such as wolves and dolphins.

In his book “The Zoologist's Guide to the Galaxy: What Animals on Earth Reveal about Aliens and Ourselves” https://amzn.to/3qJcake, he lays down the foundation for a new field, Exozoology, or zoology beyond planet Earth. Arik is confident that properties and characteristics of life on Earth and Darwin's theory of evolution will apply throughout the universe, where life is present, and could help us understand what alien life could be like: how these creatures will move, socialize, and communicate. For example, by observing fish, whose electrical pulses indicate social status, we can see that other planets might allow for communication by electricity. As there was evolutionary pressure to wriggle along a sea floor, Earthling animals tend to have left/right symmetry; on planets where creatures evolved in midair or in soupy tar, they might be lacking any symmetry at all.

Might there be an alien planet with supersonic animals? A moon where creatures have a language composed of smells? Will aliens scream with fear, act honestly, or have technology? The Zoologist's Guide to the Galaxy answers these questions using the latest science to tell the story of how life really works, on Earth and in space.

In this Bullaki Science Podcast, Arik talks about some of the topics discussed in his book, with particular focus on animal intelligence and communication, including the experimental and analytical tools used by zoologists to decode animal “language”. These insights might be helpful to the current efforts by the SETI program to intercept signals from advanced alien civilizations and decode xenolanguages (alien languages).

Full video here: https://vimeo.com/bullaki/arik 

Recorded: 21/03/2022
Published: 29/03/2022 

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