I used to love Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom, and I’m glad to see Iowahawk continuing the tradition of documenting wildlife in its natural state. In this episode, he looks at The Secret Life of Climate Researchers:
Within minutes of arriving on campus, the migratory researchers approach the entrance of the Climate Research Unit and perform the secret credential dance, fiercely displaying their prominent curriculum vitae. This signals to the security drone that they can be trusted with the sacred electronic lanyard badge that will grant them entrance to the hive’s inner sanctum.
During the upcoming research season, this hive alone will produce over 6 million metric tons of grant-sustaining climate data guano, but until recently little was known about the elusive genus of homo scientifica living inside. Where do they come from? What strange force draws them here year after year? In order to unravel the mystery, Iowahawk Geographic documentary filmmaker David Burge undertook a painstaking one-week project to finally capture the climate researchers in their native habitat.
In this exclusive footage, Burge warily approaches the hive’s security drone, disguising himself as smelly graduate student. Burge has theorized that as a member of the lowest stratum in the hive’s social system, the drone likely enjoys partying. He reaches into his backpack and offers the drone a pint of Guinness and a small bag of weed in exchange for the hive’s internal security tapes and email files. Success.
The never-before seen security tapes obtained by Burge provide a rare glimpse into the inner working of the climate research hive and its amazing guano production. In this sequence, we see one group of researchers entering the hive each carrying a datum they have retrieved from a distant climate measuring station. This is the cause of much excitement among their colleagues, who buzz around in a grant-writing frenzy.
Read and enjoy the whole thing.