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Episode 1215—Air Date: April 8, 2012

This week on National Geographic Weekend host Boyd Matson speaks with guests about sleeping with a lion, serenading cats, wiping away a threat to Sumatran rhinos, feeding a wolf bananas, climbing a volcano with Dennis Rodman's dad, fighting for the world's last natural resources, following in a Chief Justice's footsteps down the James River, and dancing our way across Cuba.

HOUR 1

• On one of her first nights in Tanzania's Ruaha National Park, Big Cats Initiative Grantee Amy Dickman was on the receiving end of a midnight snuggle with a lion. The park is home to more lions than any other place on earth. Dickman helps the cats and nearby humans live in harmony by helping people correctly identify the reasons their livestock died, rather than simply blaming the lions.

• Many researchers look to man's closest relatives to better understand ourselves. Charles Snowdon wanted to learn about music's effects on a human's moods and brain, so he developed music for tamarins. And while he was at it, he made some music for cats too. He explains that the differences between people music and animal music lie in pitch and the speed of the beat.

• America's demands for paper products make the industry a money-maker. In this country alone, we use 80 million tons of paper every year. WWF's Jan Vertefeuille explains that this demand is being filled by companies that clear-cut Sumatra's forests, endangering rare tigers, orangutans, and rhinos.

Maggie Howell worked on Manhattan's Wall Street until she heard the call of the wild. Howell now runs the Wolf Conservation Center where she breeds wolves and slips pups into dens of wolves who have recently given birth. She recently visited National Geographic's headquarters with Atka, an Arctic grey wolf that loves to eat bananas.

David Braun, editor of National Geographic Daily News, joins Boyd to discuss just how well giant squid can see in the ocean's darkest depths.

HOUR 2

• Some of the world's greatest discoveries were made accidentally. Christopher Columbus found the New World while looking for the East Indies. Alexander Fleming found penicillin when a mold growth interfered with his staph bacteria culture. And Daniel Engber was in the Philippines to climb volcanos and learn about the ring of fire when he encountered Dennis Rodman's long-lost father.

• The world is quickly running out of resources, and if we don't develop alternate means of energy and learn to be more efficient with our water, Michael Klare, author of the book The Race for What's Left: The Global Scramble for the World's Last Resources anticipates a future filled with conflict over the planet's dwindling supplies.

• In a strange twist of American history, John Marshall, the country's fourth Chief Justice, led an expedition down the James River in the fall of 1812 to explore a transport corridor to get goods from West Virginia to Washington, D.C. and other major population centers. Grantee Andrew Shaw tells Boyd of his plans to retrace Marshall's original trip in a period-accurate batteau.

• Dancers are born, not made. James Vlahos confirmed this theory on a recent trip to Cuba, where he took his salsa dancing skills to the same clubs and bars where he learned a few new steps from the Cubans. He wrote about the experience in "Falling For Cuba" in the March/April 2012 issue of National Geographic Traveler magazine.

• In this week's Wild Chronicles segment, Boyd tells about a family trip camping in Africa where he and his kids had a close encounter with a lonely lion.

Listen to National Geographic Weekend

Episode 1215—Air Date: April 8, 2012

  • 00:11:00 Amy Dickman

    On one of her first nights in Tanzania's Ruaha National Park, Big Cats Initiative Grantee Amy Dickman was on the receiving end of a midnight snuggle with a lion. The park is home to more lions than any other place on earth. Dickman helps the cats and nearby humans live in harmony by helping people correctly identify the reasons their livestock died, rather than simply blaming the lions.

  • 00:09:00 Charles Snowdon

    Many researchers look to man's closest relatives to better understand ourselves. Charles Snowdon wanted to learn about music's effects on a human's moods and brain, so he developed music for tamarins. And while he was at it, he made some music for catstoo. He explains that the differences between people music and animal music lies in pitch and the speed of the beat.

  • 00:06:00 Jan Vertefeuille

    America's demands for paper products make the industry a money-maker. In this country alone, we use 80 million tons of paper every year. WWF's Jan Vertefeuille explains that this demand is being filled by companies that clear-cut Sumatra's forests, endangering rare tigers, orangutans and rhinos.

  • 00:08:00 Maggie Howell

    Maggie Howell worked on Manhattan's Wall Street until she heard the call of the wild. Howell now runs the Wolf Conservation Center where she breeds wolves and slips pups into dens of wolves who have recently given birth. She recently visited National Geographic's headquarters with Atka, an Arctic grey wolf who loves to eat bananas.

  • 00:03:50 News - April 8

    David Braun, editor of National Geographic Daily News, joins Boyd to just how well giant squid can see in the ocean's darkest depths.

  • 00:11:00 Daniel Engber

    Some of the world's greatest discoveries were made accidentally. Christopher Columbus found the New World while looking for the East Indies. Alexander Fleming found penicillin when a mold growth interfered with his staph bacteria culture. And Daniel Engber went to the Philippines to climb volcanos and learn about the ring of fire, when he encountered Dennis Rodman's long lost father.

  • 00:09:00 Michael Klare

    The world is quickly running out of resources and if we don't develop alternate means of energy and learn to be more efficient with our water, Michael Klare, author of The Race for What's Left: The Global Scramble for the World's Last Resources anticipates a future filled with conflict over the planet's dwindling supplies.

  • 00:06:00 Andrew Shaw

    In a strange twist of American history, John Marshall, the country's fourth Chief Justice, led an expedition down the James River in the fall of 1812 to explore a transport corridor to get goods from West Virginia to Washington, D.C. and other major population centers. Grantee Andrew Shaw tells Boyd of his plans to retrace Marshall's original trip in a period-accurate batteau.

  • 00:08:00 James Vlahos

    Dancers are born, not made. James Vlahos confirmed this theory on a recent trip to Cuba, where he took his salsa dancing skills to the same clubs and bars where he learned a few new steps from the Cubans. He wrote about the experience in the March/April issue of National Geographic Traveler magazine.

  • In this week's Wild Chronicles segment, Boyd tells about a family trip camping in Africa where he and his kids had a close encounter with a lonely lion.