Flora, Fauna + Fungi with Dr. Sapphire McMullan-Fisher
July 19, 2021
Catie chats with Dr. Sapphire McMullan-Fisher, an ecologist with a special interest in biodiversity conservation, particularly macrofungi and mosses.
Sapphire is a renowned scientific researcher, speaker, teacher and author with a knack for communicating fungi’s vital ecological roles — and why we should all pay a lot more attention to these remarkable, all-connecting entities.
She's is also a pretty radical member of the community here in Naarm/Melbourne, who last year let Catie + George transform her suburban backyard into a market garden through the Growing Farmers program.
Wise, lively and friend of the fungi, enjoy this cracking convo with Sapphire McMullan-Fisher.
- Being a Gondwanan
- Growing up in a mining town in the Pilbara.
- From saving African animals to fungi fascination.
- A fire and fungi pHD in Tasmania.
- Overcoming dyslexia in academia.
- Ecosystems need fungi!
- Decomposition + partners of plants.
- Why to leave the tree debris be.
- Journey back to the Carboniferous period when all the coal and oil was formed.
- Fungi eats wood, invertebrates eat fungi, birds eat invertebrates... hey presto!
- Life goes on. (Even though we’re seriously messing with systems.)
- How an understanding of matter recycling gives an appreciation of post-humous existence.
- Patterns + process + life = wow.
- Where do humans fit in the bigger picture? Should we just hurry up and extinct ourselves, or…?
- Making space + food in your garden for other organisms who deserve to be here in the landscape.
- How mindfulness of observing nature increase your understanding of it.
- Find the things that make your curiosity pop.
- Ask: what is it? How do I found out more about it?
- Re-activating our patterning brain.
- Curiosity as a practice.
- Being on the spectrum as a superpower.
- Growing up thinking you’re not clever.
- Absorbing information in tiny little bites.
- Expanding communicating styles so that everyone gets it.
- How expectations shape your view of self.
- Looking to ecosystems to confirm our need for diversity.
- Allowing ourselves to learn and love learning.
- Biology is not a soft science!
- How a car accident changed everything.
- Having trust that humans won’t be assholes.
- They say you need a village to raise a child… I need a village just to survive!
- The impossibility of going life alone.
- How do you learn to ask people for help?
- Letting people self select in how they help.
- Ways to be be radical and resist the status quo.
- Being sustainable within your limits.
- What’s the #1 priority in taking action for the world?
- Letting your inner child guide us towards more fulfilling life and work.
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