AMplify - Podcast

Australian Museum podcasts take you behind the scenes of our collections and give you a front row seat at our live events.

What's new on AMplify podcast

Flying Fox bellydipping | © Nick Edards

Episode 39: Live at the AM - HumanNature Lecture Series, Deborah Bird Rose

8 May 2018

Deborah Bird Rose from the School of Humanities and Languages at University of New South Wales examines the intersection of humans, animals and landscape, and the fragility of their relationships in the face of environmental crisis and loss.

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Treasures – an Australian Museum podcast series

Our new podcast series reveals the hidden stories behind some of the world’s greatest wonders. Join journalist Charles Wooley and Australian Museum Director Kim McKay as they explore the astounding objects and specimens of the 200 Treasures of the Australian Museum exhibition, housed in the nation’s oldest museum gallery.

Douglas Mawson | Photographer: Frank Hurley © State Library of NSW

Treasures, Episode 8: Life in the freezer

30 April 2018

The icy expanses of Antarctica were an unforgiving frontier for early explorers. Among them was Sir Douglas Mawson, who faced frostbite, exposure and exhaustion in his journeys across the frozen continent. He passed some of his time writing love letters to his wife back home. But how did he stumble on a meteorite in all that ice and snow?

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M7310 Platypus Rug | Photographer: Carl Bento

Treasures, Episode 7: The platypus rug and the lyre bird

23 April 2018

Early British settlers were so flummoxed by the platypus that they thought it an elaborate hoax, created by stitching a duck’s beak onto the body of a mole. But Australia’s greatest charlatan is an entirely different creature to behold.

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Bird-shaped pestle, Western Province, Papua New Guinea | Photographer: Ric Bolzan © Australian Museum

Treasures, Episode 6: The pestle that changed the world

16 April 2018

One of the most significant objects in the Australian Museum’s collection is a humble, hand-crafted bird-shaped pestle. Its invention marked a crucial moment in human history, upon which entire civilisations grew. The influence of the simple stone object stretched all the way to the Pacific, where this story takes a sudden, violent twist.

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Thylacine with bird in mouth | Photographer: Harry Burrell © Australian Museum

Treasures, Episode 5: The last tiger

9 April 2018

The wilful and wanton destruction of the Tasmanian Tiger is a sad reminder of the importance of conserving our natural history. Charles Wooley reveals the tragic tale of the man who shot the world’s last Tasmanian Tiger in the wild. And the team tells the story of resurrecting the world’s rarest insect, now living on a lonely volcanic rock at sea.

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Close up image of Mel Ward's crab collection in small glass jars

Treasures, Episode 4: The strange obsessions of Australia’s greatest crab collector

2 April 2018

Mel Ward started life on the stage as an acrobat and comedian. But something about the creatures he found on the beach as a child kept calling him back to the sea. But what drove him to collect 25,000 crabs from around the world? And what exactly is eccentric dancing?

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Australian Museum curator, Gerard Krefft's chair

Treasures, Episode 3: Charles Darwin and the curator’s chair

26 March 2018

Working in a museum in the 19th century was a hazardous occupation. In 1831, the Australian Museum’s inaugural custodian William Holmes accidentally shot himself with his own shotgun, while collecting a cockatoo. But the sudden demise of museum curator, Darwinian and “guardian angel” Gerard Krefft, was more curious still.

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Gold nugget sitting next to one Australian Dollar coin

Treasures, Episode 2: The great gold nugget and the cricket stumps

19 March 2018

Sydney in the early 1800s was a fledgling colony, full of convicts, soldiers, settlers and social climbers – the kind of town where you might win and lose your fortune in a single day. With the release of Australia’s first bank note and the subsequent gold rush in NSW came the whiff of financial security. But how did a large gold nugget go from an abandoned mine shaft to a government office corridor game of cricket?

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Kim Mckay and Charles Wooley at Westpac Long Gallery

Treasures, Episode 1: The first and finest gallery in the land

12 March 2018

Step inside the Westpac Long Gallery – home of 200 Treasures of the Australian Museum. The nation’s first museum gallery is a treasure in its own right. Newly restored, it showcases the most important items in the museum’s collection of more than 18 million scientific specimens and cultural objects.

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AMplify & Live at the AM

AMplify brings you up close and personal with the life and work of the Australian Museum’s scientists and cultural experts, in conversation with museum director Kim McKay.

Live at the AM offers you a front row seat at enlightening presentations by leading scientists, philosophers, explorers, writers and thinkers.

Portrait of Michael Mel

Episode 38: Michael Mel

27 February 2018

AM CEO & Director Kim McKay chats to Michael Mel, Manager of the West Pacific Collection Manager at the Australian Museum.

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Pella, Tell Excavations | © Pella Excavation Project

Episode 37: Live at the AM - Stephen Bourke

22 November 2017

Hear highlights from 50 years of excavations from Stephen Bourke (USYD), archaeologist and Director of the Pella Excavation Project in the latest episode AM Live.

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The 1971 Lord Howe Island Environmental Survey Group | Photographer: Tim Levy © Australian Museum

Episode 36: Live at the AM - AMRI Lifetime Achievement Awards

13 September 2017

A live recording on the 2017 Australian Museum Research Institute (AMRI) Lifetime Achievement Awards.

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Dr Simon Longstaff | Photographer: © Eastside FM

Episode 35: Live at the AM - Dr Simon Longstaff

26 July 2017

In this episode of AM Live, Dr Simon Longstaff offers engaging approaches to teaching children how to think and behave ethically.

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Laura McBride, Creative Producer, Indigenous Programs at the Australian Museum

Episode 34: Laura McBride

12 July 2017

AM CEO Kim McKay catches up with Laura McBride, AM's Creative Producer - Indigenous Programs during NAIDOC Week 2017.

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Sharni Jones, Manager of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Island Collection at the Australian Museum

Episode 33: Sharni Jones

5 July 2017

AM Director and CEO Kim McKay talks to Sharni Jones, Manager, Aboriginal & Torres Strait Island Collection at the Australian Museum.

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Gillian Scott, Exhibitions Manager at the Australian Museum

Episode 32: Gillian Scott

17 May 2017

CEO Kim McKay chats Egyptology, spiders and traveling the world with Gillian Scott, AM's Manager, Exhibitions.

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2017 Eureka Prizes Launch Panel

Episode 31: Live at the AM — 2017 Eureka Prizes Launch

20 April 2017

A live panel discussion with former Eureka Prize winners, hosted by Robyn Williams.

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Bruce Pascoe

Episode 30: Live at the AM: Bruce Pascoe

12 April 2017

Dark Emu author Bruce Pascoe deconstructs over-simplified portrayals of Indigenous life and the discoveries of this country's first people.

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Funnelweb Spider

Episode 29: Should We Fear Spiders?

5 April 2017

What are the symptoms and treatments for spider bites? Is our fear of spiders evolutionary or cultural? Can Arachnophobia be cured?

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Dr Jenny Newall

Episode 28: Dr Jenny Newall

22 March 2017

Pacific Collection specialist Dr Jenny Newall joins the AM team fresh from her work with the American Museum of Natural History.

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Dr Helen Maynard-Casely

Episode 27: Dr Helen Maynard-Casely

8 March 2017

In this AM Live episode, Dr Helen Maynard-Casely takes us on a journey through the solar system on the eve of the United Nations Day of Women and Girls In Science (11 February 2017).

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Vanessa Finney, Manager of Archives and Rare Books

Episode 26: Vanessa Finney

14 February 2017

Executive Director and CEO Kim McKay in conversation with Vanessa Finney, Manager of Archives and Rare Books

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Sheldon Teare, Objects Conservator at the Australian Museum

Episode 25: Sheldon Teare

7 February 2017

Executive Director and CEO Kim McKay in conversation with Sheldon Teare, Objects Conservator at the Australian Museum

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Professor Tim Flannery at the AM's Solomon Islands workshop

Episode 24: Professor Tim Flannery

12 December 2016

Kim McKay AO in conversation with explorer, scientist and 2007 Australian of the Year, Professor Tim Flannery.

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Anthropologist Dr Robin Torrence

Episode 23: Dr Robin Torrence, Anthropologist

2 December 2016

Anthropologist Dr Robin Torrence chats with Kim McKay about her research on the function of ancient material on peoples’ daily lives.

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Exhibition Producer Catherine Timbrell

Episode 22: Catherine Timbrell, Exhibition Producer

21 November 2016

Catherine Timbrell talks to Kim McKay about the creation of the exhibition Spiders - Alive & Deadly.

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Asaro Mud Man during their visit to the AM

Episode 21: Live at the AM, Asaro Mud Men

3 November 2016

Live at the AM, a distinguished panel explore the cultural significance and museum acquisition of Asaro Mud Men Masks.

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Award-winning landscape and nature photographer Luke Tscharke.

Episode 20: Nature Photographer Luke Tsharke

17 October 2016

Live at the AM, award-winning photographer Luke Tsharke discusses the joys and risks of the getting the perfect shot.

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Steven Alderton,Prof Iain McCalman, Janet Laurence and Kim McKay

Episode 19: Steven Alderton, Director of Programs, Exhibitions & Cultural Collections

15 September 2016

Kim McKay in conversation with the AM's Director of Programs, Exhibitions & Cultural Collections, Steven Alderton.

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Professor Mary O'Kane

Episode 18: Professor Mary O'Kane, AMRI Lecture

22 August 2016

Listen to the live recording of the 2016 AMRI Address and Lecture delivered by Professor Mary O'Kane, NSW Chief Scientist & Engineer.

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Janet Laurence

Episode 17: Janet Laurence, AM artist-in-residence

4 August 2016

Listen as Kim McKay speaks with AM artist-in-residence Janet Laurence after the opening of Deep Breathing (Resuscitation for the Reef).

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Gaby Kennard

Episode 16: Trailblazers Talk, with Gaby Kennard

27 July 2016

This week, another LIVE Trailblazers Talk, with Gaby Kennard the first Australian woman to fly solo around the world.

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Phil Gordon

Episode 15: Phil Gordon, Aboriginal Heritage Project Officer

19 July 2016

This week Kim McKay talks with Phil Gordon about the museums important Aboriginal collection and repatriation work.

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DigiVol Lab

Episode 14: Paul Flemons, Manager Digital Collections and Citizen Science

12 July 2016

Kim McKay talks with Paul Flemons about the highly commended DigiVol program created by the museum.

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Tim Flannery

Episode 13: Trailblazers Talk, with Tim Flannery

5 July 2016

This week, another LIVE Trailblazers Talk, with Tim Flannery.

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Mark McGrouther

Episode 12: Mark McGrouther, Ichthyology Collection Manager

23 June 2016

Listen as Kim McKay talks with Mark McGrouther about the impressive Ichthyology collection.

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Dr Richard Major

Episode 11: Dr Richard Major Pt 2, Ornithologist

15 June 2016

In this episode, Kim McKay discusses the Cockatoo Wingtag and Hollows as Homes citizen science projects with Ornithologist Dr Richard Major.

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Dr Jodi Rowley

Episode Ten: Dr Jodi Rowley Pt 2, Amphibian Biologist

31 May 2016

Kim speaks further with Dr Jodi Rowley, whose research reveals the critical role amphibians play in our echo-systems and the unique ways frogs can be identified.

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Keren Ruki

Episode Nine: Keren Ruki

23 May 2016

Listen as Kim McKay speaks with Creative Producer Keren Ruki about the significance of the Pacific Collections.

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Tim Cope

Episode Eight: Trailblazers Talk, with 'long-rider' Tim Cope

17 May 2016

This week, another LIVE Trailblazers Talk, join ‘long-rider’ Tim Cope for an evening on the Steppe.

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Dr Richard Major in the field

Episode Seven: Dr Richard Major, Ornithologist

10 May 2016

Listen as Kim McKay speaks to ornithologist Dr Richard Major about the plight of native birds in Sydney.

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Eureka Launch Panel 2016

Episode Six: LIVE panel from the Australian Museum Eureka Prizes launch

3 May 2016

This week, listen to some dynamic Trailblazers of Australian Science from the 2016 Australian Museum Eureka Prizes launch.

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Dr Mark Eldridge

Episode Five: Dr Mark Eldridge, Mammologist

26 April 2016

This week on AMplify, the AM's Principal Research Scientist in Mammalogy tells Kim that "extreme intervention" will be required to save Australian species from extinction.

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Howard Whelan and Greg Mortimer, An Evening on Everest

Episode Four: Trailblazers Talk, Greg Mortimor, Aussie explorer and mountaineer

19 April 2016

Listen to the first Trailblazers Talk, a conversation between Australian Geographic's founding editor, Howard Whelan, and renowned Aussie explorer and mountaineer, Greg Mortimor.

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Rhacophorus Helenae - Frog

Episode Three: Dr Jodi Rowley, Amphibian Biologist

12 April 2016

Listen to Kim speak with Dr Jodi Rowley, Amphibian Biologist in Herpetology, whose research reveals amphibian diversity and her a passion for communicating biodiversity conservation.

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Australian Museum Beetle Collection

Episode Two: Dr Chris Reid, Entomologist

5 April 2016

Curiosity about the natural world led Chris into a museum job at age 12, kicking off a lifetime of research. In this episode, Kim chats with Chris about the decline of Christmas beetles, studying leeches in an igloo on Lord Howe Island, and the 6.5 million insect species held in the AM collection.

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Dr Rebecca Johnson

Episode One: Dr Rebecca Johnson

29 March 2016

"I look at the DNA of pretty much any species of animal, wildlife in our world here at the Australian Museum basically means all animals but not typically plants, and that also excludes humans..." - Dr Rebecca Johnson

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