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Episode 419: The Scientist who Loves Fish and the Filmmakers Behind “Kangaroo”

By Jasmin and Mariann — January 20, 2018


Welcome to the 419th episode of Our Hen House!

First, Mariann talks to Becca Franks about the research into whether or not fish experience pain. Becca received her PhD in Psychology from Columbia University and completed a Killiam Postdoctoral Research Fellowship with the Animal Welfare Program at The University of British Columbia. Throughout her career, Becca has been interested in uncovering fundamental patterns of well-being that apply across species, working with walruses, chimpanzees, salmon, rats, cows, humans, mice, and zebrafish. This fall she joined the Animal Studies Initiative as a research scientist to explore issues related to fish and aquatic animal welfare.

Then, Mariann talks to Kate McIntyre Clere and Michael McIntyre about their new film, Kangaroo – A Love-Hate Story. Set in distinctive Australian landscapes, Kangaroo – A Love-Hate Story explores the complex and conflicting opinions around this unique marsupial at the center of the largest mass destruction of wildlife in the world. With breathtaking footage of kangaroos in the wild, the film provides audiences with an up close experience of this unique species and bring to the table a conversation that Australians seem reluctant to have; the future of the largest remaining marsupial species left on the planet. Watch the trailer here.

Plus, Jasmin wants to know what you’re doing on a daily basis to increase your activism, and she covers this week’s News. Mariann covers Rising Anxieties!

Also, we’re conducting a survey of our listeners and we would love for you to help us improve the show by taking it. It’s completely anonymous, and voluntary, but if you’d like to take it you can do so by clicking here! Thanks.

As always, the award-winning weekly Our Hen House podcast is hosted by Mariann Sullivan and Jasmin Singer.


This episode is brought to you in part through the generosity of A Well-Fed World. A Well-Fed World is a hunger relief and animal protection organization chipping away at two of the world’s most immense, unnecessary and unconscionable forms of suffering… the suffering of people hungry from lack of food, and the suffering of animals used and abused for food. Mending our unjust food system is a critical part of solving the world’s most destructive and persistent problems. Fortunately, the plant-based foods that promote health and well-being are the same foods that conserve resources to better feed the world, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and protecting the environment. A Well-Fed World provides the means for change by empowering individuals, social justice organizations, and political decision makers to embrace the benefits of plant-based foods and farming. Learn more at

You can listen to our podcast directly on our website (beneath this paragraph!) or you can listen and subscribe on iTunes or your favorite podcatcher! Also, if you like what you hear, please rate it on iTunes, and don’t forget to leave us a friendly comment! Of course, we would be thrilled if you would also consider making a donation, or becoming a member of our flock (especially if you’re a regular listener). Any amount is hugely appreciated, and Our Hen House is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, so it’s tax-deductible! Thank you for helping us create quality content, and for helping us bring you a new podcast episode each week!

The Our Hen House theme song is written and sung by the incredible Michael Harren, who is also OHH’s Director of Communications! Don’t forget to tune into Our Hen House’s other two podcasts: The Teaching Jasmin How to Cook Vegan Podcast, and The Animal Law Podcast.

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