Curious minds select the most fascinating podcasts from around the world. Discover hand-piqd audio recommendations on your favorite topics.
Padma has been a journalist for the past 14 years. She has primarily reported on science and environment for Indian newspapers and magazines. Since 2015, she has also been writing and hosting a science podcast, The Intersection produced by Audiomatic.
Her work has appeared in several Indian publications, such as The Times of India, The Hindu, Mint, Scroll.in, The Telegraph and many others. Internationally, she has written for San Francisco Chronicle, Global Post, Newsweek, New Scientist.
In a crushing blow to conservationists, China recently legalised trade in tiger and rhino parts for "medical use". Among other ramifications, this act carries the legitimate risk of increased poaching and hunting. This news took me back to a classroom I sat in two years ago at Trinity College, Dublin, participating in a heated, animated debate on whether hunting can save endangered species, especially the African Rhino. I was on the side of "No, it cannot", which I felt was the "right side". The question of whether big game trophy hunting can benefit the conservation of endangered animals is a fraught one.
Apart from conservation concerns, the issue is also tangled in ethical and moral dilemmas. I, for one, cannot imagine a world where creatures are killed to generate revenue... to save them. It seems perverse and entirely anthropocentric. But then do we have evidence of whether this actually works in the real world? I present one of my top five podcast episodes ever—The Rhino Hunter from the exceptional podcast Radiolab.
On this episode, Abumrad and Krulwich home in on Corey Knowlton, a Texan trophy hunter, who paid US$350,000 at auction for a permit to kill a rare black rhinoceros. Can an act of killing save several others? It is a very difficult topic. But if such moral (and financial) dilemmas interest you, listen to this evocative episode today.