Exploring North Carolina: Season 7

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Season 7

Episode 701: Story in Quarries

How old is the land on which North Carolina is located? You may be surprised to learn that the Tar Heel State is a geologic "crazy quilt" made up of pieces of terrain widely varying in age.

The best windows into our distant past are quarries found in almost every county from the edge of the Pamlico Sound to the Tennessee border. With the help of some of North Carolina’s most experienced geologists, Exploring North Carolina found pieces of North Carolina ranging from a few million to more than one billion years old—the story in quarries. (January 6) \

Episode 702: Buffers

North Carolina has 17 river basins and was blessed with abundant fresh water. All too often, however, we have all heard stories about sediment and contaminants in our streams and lakes.

As we continue to grow we must do a better job of protecting our watersheds and fresh water resources. There is no better, or more effective, way to ensure clean water than to maintain substantial forest buffers wherever possible. The city of Asheville has given us a clean water model that all cities and landowners should study carefully. (January 13)

Episode 703: The First Colony

If you have always thought that Roanoke Island was the site of the first European colony, or settlement, in North America, think again.

Led by Dr. David Moore, a talented team of archeologists has located the probable location of "Fort San Juan" in the foothills of the Appalachians near Morganton, NC. This Spanish outpost (1566 and 1567), was established two decades before "The Lost Colony" at Roanoke Island, behind North Carolina’s Outer Banks.

Exploring North Carolina was privileged to visit the archeologists on site and interview them at the location of Fort San Juan. (January 20)

Episode 704: Long-Bellied Friends

For too many years some of our best neighbors have been given a bad rap. We have told untrue stories about them, feared them, and even worse, tried to harm them. Exploring North Carolina believes that it is time to stand up for them: we are talking about snakes—all 38 species found in our state.

In this important episode, with the help of experts, Exploring North Carolina will separate fact from fiction. You will learn how to identify the relatively few venomous snakes in our ecosystems, and discover why all “long bellied friends” are important. (January 27)

Episode 705: "Fort Bragging Rights"

All of us know how important Fort Bragg is to the defense of the United States and to the economy of North Carolina. Very few people are aware, however, that across this vast military reservation there are numerous historic sites of American Indians, and of early Scottish settlers who spoke Gaelic. Fort Bragg, the home to some our nation’s most elite military units, is also home to a number of important plant and animal communities that are well protected and preserved by the military. Exploring North Carolina has been invited to take its audience on a behind-the-scenes tour of some of the most ecologically and historically significant locations at Fort Bragg with the archeologists and scientists who know it best

Episode 706: "New" Beginnings

The New River begins as two small streams in the highest mountains in northwestern corner of North Carolina. It flows north into Virginia and West Virginia, and eventually become part of the Ohio River and Mississippi River. In the mid 1970’s almost 30 miles of this ancient, beautiful river and numerous multi-generational farms along its course were almost lost to an ill-conceived hydro-electric project. This is the story of the New River and its salvation following an epic political/conservation struggle that ended in its designation as a “Wild and Scenic River” by President Gerald Ford in 1976.

Episode 707: Giving Nature a Hand

It is no secret that man has not always been a good steward of the land. Too many times we have looked at the earth’s resources as inexhaustible. Forestry, farming, and industrial practices sometimes left the land scarred. These scars have never been deeper than in the 1930s during the Great Depression. To help restore the land, plant trees and build parks, President Franklin Roosevelt established the CCC, Civilian Conservation Corps. The men of the CCC were sometimes called the “Tree Army” and “Roosevelt’s Woodsmen.” On this episode of Exploring North Carolina we interview men whose lives were changed forever by the CCC, men who gave nature a hand. Don’t miss this inspiring episode.

Episode 708: Homecomings

Have you ever thought that many creatures depend on North Carolina as their second home? Numerous birds, marine creatures and insects travel thousands of miles each year to spend summers or winters in North Carolina. Some part-time creatures, including the chimney swift, thrive in urban settings, while others require pristine wilderness. This show is about the many “Homecomings” that occur each year in our state.

Episode 709: Power in Nature

When we think of sources of energy in North Carolina most of us probably think of rows of gas pumps along our highways. In our homes and businesses power is only the length of an extension cord away. As world energy prices have continued to rise, all of us have begun to look at power sources close to home. Nature has given us many sources of energy right here in North Carolina. In this episode, Exploring North Carolina will examine the “Power in Nature.”

Episode 710: Two Lakes and a Pond

Eastern North Carolina has numerous oval-shaped, shallow lakes. Most are natural lakes (not dammed). Many are rimmed by swamps and cypress trees and contain incredible biodiversity.  In this episode ENC explores the mysteries of two lakes (Waccamaw and Phelps) and a pond (Merchant’s Millpond), each of which is now the site of a unique state park.

Episode 711: Art in the Wild
To hunters and guides, decoys, often crude, of wood and canvas were simply tools to attract birds. As fewer birds came to coastal waters the decoys got more elaborate, but still no one called them art. As the years passed the genius in decoys was recognized. As we look at skills of decoy makers of the past, we now know they were both artists and biologists. By any standard they created “Art in the Wild.”

Episode 712: Nature's Classroom

What was the best classroom in which you had the privilege of learning? Was it a modern design with plenty of light, and desks in a circle to help students feel more comfortable? Or, was your best classroom in an old brick building with very high ceilings and long rows of wooden desks? Our bet is that your best classroom was not in a building at all, but one in the great outdoors. In this episode Exploring North Carolina will demonstrate the magic of “Nature’s Classroom” with the help of an innovative program in the mountains of North Carolina.