Vagrant Birds
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Description
Vagrant birds are those that appear in locations where they are not usually found. They might have been blown off course by a storm or have been affected by changing weather patterns due to climate change. Although a treat for birders, these visitors can also have a big impact on their new environments as Victoria Gill finds out when she heads to Burton Mere Wetlands on the Dee Estuary with Dr Alexander Lees, reader in biodiversity at Manchester Metropolitan University. As former Prime Minister Boris Johnson gives his testimony, we hear the latest from the UK Covid-19 Public Inquiry with BBC Health Reporter Jim Reed. A new study reveals that, contrary to a commonly-held view, the brain does not have the ability to rewire itself to compensate for the loss of, for example sight, an amputation or stroke. This is despite what most scientists believe and teach. Moreover, the assumption that it has this ability has led to all manner of erroneous treatments for amputees, stroke victims and other conditions, the study suggests. We’re joined by the study’s authors, Professor John Krakauer from Johns Hopkins University and Professor Tamar Making of the University of Cambridge. We’ll also hear from one of Tamar’s key case studies, Kirsty Mason, an amputee from the age of 18 who advanced the scientists’ experiments exponentially.   Presenter: Victoria Gill Producers: Hannah Robins and Louise Orchard Editor: Richard Collings Production Co-ordinator: Jana Bennett-Holesworth  BBC Inside Science is produced in collaboration with the Open University.
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