Prof. Kate Jones (Part One): What do you get if you cross David Attenborough with Harrison Ford?

Part Indiana Jones, part David Attenborough - and a real live descendant of Charles “Origin of the Species” Darwin - Professor Kate Jones is a professor of ecology and biodiversity at UCL. A previous recipient of the Leverhulme award, she spends a LOT of time researching the relationships between animals and humans, in particular keeping an eye on mammals and the infectious diseases they may happen to pass onto us (think SARS, think Ebola, oh, and think COVID-19.) On top of that, she is one of the world’s experts on Chiroptera, aka BATS, and has led massive bat monitoring studies with citizen scientists all over the world with the Bat Conservation Trust. This is a two-part interview, but even by the end of part one, you’ll agree that perhaps the most infectious thing about bats is how simply incredible they are. For instance: without bats there would be no tequila, and while some bats drink blood, others catch fish from the surface of the water, or pluck songbirds from the air, mid-flight, at night! And, did you know, that 1 in 5 mammal species on this planet is, you’ve guessed it, a bat!

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