Blue Dot: Mark Catesby in the New World and California's massive snowpack
Host Dave Schlom visits with author Patrick Dean about his new book, Nature's Messenger: Mark Catesby and his Adventures in a New World. Dean's book reveals that the 18th-century British naturalist, who preceded John James Audubon, recorded his observations in America of the stunning array of flora and fauna he found there.
An accomplished observer and artist who drew on knowledge from indigenous and enslaved peoples, Catesby then published his work in his magnum opus, The Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahamas. Catesby's pioneering work as a naturalist showed the interconnectedness in nature that would become the modern science of ecology.
In the second half of the program, Dave interviews Dr. Thomas Painter, Founder and CEO of Airborne Snow Observatories Inc. Painter takes the technology he helped pioneer at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory to new levels as his team flies aircraft armed with remote sensing equipment to accurately map the scope of California's snowpack, which took on epic proportions after a series of atmospheric river events in the winter of 2022-23.