Brain Junk

Series produced by Trace Kerr

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Everything you never knew you wanted to know. We guarantee, you won't be bored.

Amy Barton and Trace Kerr shake up science, history & culture in this once a week show. We hunt for off the wall, totally unexpected answers to questions and bring them to you in two to ten minute short, "Brain Storms" or longer twenty to thirty minute episodes.
We dive into questions like: What are Supernumerary teeth? Do ants pass the Mirror Test? Why do kids in Denmark murder their birthday cakes?
Brain Junk is a fun ride for adults and kids who want to know.


93 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
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There's a strange connection between King penguins, one of their favorite islands, and Nitrous Oxide gas.

  • Added: Mar 30, 2021
  • Length: 05:01
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Our best topics come from late night dinner table conversations with our kids. Amy attempts to answer the question: Are there herds of hamsters roa...

  • Added: Mar 30, 2021
  • Length: 05:16
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Imagine if you could block out loud noises at a party by taking a really deep breath. That's how the female American Green Tree Frog manages to fil...

  • Added: Mar 30, 2021
  • Length: 04:44
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Can a cuttlefish master a test that very young children often struggle to pass? Instead of using marshmallows like we do with people, scientists us...

  • Added: Mar 30, 2021
  • Length: 05:05
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Arachnophobes BEWARE! Imagine a spider that uses special silk to lift something that's 50 times bigger than itself. There is a video! You must wat...

  • Added: Mar 30, 2021
  • Length: 04:59
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What is that weird smell? It's called trimethylamine (TMA) and for most of us it stinks like rotten fish. For a small percentage of people it smell...

  • Added: Mar 30, 2021
  • Length: 05:04
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What if we burned calories the same way cars use gas for fuel? Amy fell down the comparison hole trying to figure out the "car calories" for humans...

  • Added: Mar 30, 2021
  • Length: 04:54
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Traffic lights, a hair relaxant, gas masks, the zig-zag stitch on sewing machines...all of these important inventions have one thing in common, Gar...

  • Added: Feb 21, 2021
  • Length: 05:57
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Who knew a tiny animal could contain such a multitude of cool facts? For our 150th episode we dive into the life of the shrew. It's a phenomenal cr...

  • Added: Feb 21, 2021
  • Length: 05:00
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Originating in India, the western version of the red bandana began in 1800s England with the use of snuff. Over the years the pattern has changed s...

  • Added: Feb 21, 2021
  • Length: 04:55
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We catch you up with an update on fluorescing animals and then jump right into new research on Long Fin Damsel fish that use Mysid shrimp to farm a...

  • Added: Feb 02, 2021
  • Length: 04:56
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In WWI and WWII women were super sneaky and ingenious using their yarn and knitting needles to covertly transport coded messages. That's right, tod...

Bought by Spokane Public Radio


  • Added: Feb 02, 2021
  • Length: 04:45
  • Purchases: 1
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There are over 70 examples of knights fighting snails in illuminated manuscripts from the 1300s. But why? First meme? A silly inside joke? A weird ...

  • Added: Jan 20, 2021
  • Length: 04:47
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When music comes on, can you clap along or do you struggle to find the beat? If you have a hard time keeping up with the rhythm, there's a reason a...

  • Added: Jan 20, 2021
  • Length: 04:12
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Col. William H Jackson had a favorite tree. So, somewhere around 1832, Colonel Jackson gave the white oak tree to itself (and the city of Athens, G...

  • Added: Jan 07, 2021
  • Length: 04:42
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Help us lean into the New Year with the many Scottish traditions surrounding Hogmanay! There are wee drams of whiskey and balls of fire and cleanin...

Bought by WTIP


  • Added: Dec 23, 2020
  • Length: 04:53
  • Purchases: 1
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Tired of cold feet and longs nights huddled under not quite warm enough blankets? Maybe you need a box bed. Originating in medieval times, making a...

  • Added: Dec 23, 2020
  • Length: 04:45
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There are only approximately 400,000 elephants left in the world. Frustrated and saddened by this stark statistic, Dr. Lucy King set out to find a ...

  • Added: Dec 23, 2020
  • Length: 04:59
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Ramesses II (Also known as Ramses or Rameses) became Pharaoh at the age of 14, had more children than any other Egyptian ruler, and reigned during ...

  • Added: Dec 23, 2020
  • Length: 04:46
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On July 6th, 1930 Fred Newton dipped a toe into the Mississippi river and explained to reporters that he planned to swim from Minneapolis to New Or...

  • Added: Dec 23, 2020
  • Length: 04:59