VOICES Ideas and Insight From Explorers
Tag archives for international league of conservation photographers
These photos come from Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve. And by all means, if you ever have a chance to visit the snowy shores of the Chilkat outside Haines, Alaska, I encourage you to do it, especially after the tourists have left, and the temperature now causes ice crystals to form inside your nostrils. This preserve represents the best of who we are as a country. And I think, with everything going on right now, we can at least agree, that we need to remember the things we’ve done right.
Imagine a booming underwater powerhouse, overflowing with vibrant biodiversity; a vast, dynamic wonderland of adaptation in aquatic form. Primordial soup? Not quite–though coral reefs are themselves an irreplaceable vessel of life. From fish nurseries to coastline protection and pharmaceutical breakthroughs to diving meccas, coral reefs provide a multitude of ecological services and economic contributions. Awed by the endless infinity of life living upon life to degrees unimaginable to the naked eye, I count myself lucky to have spent time in these enchanting habitats in many parts of the world.
The humble mangrove forest is one of the most biologically important ecosystems that border our oceans. They act as the skin of our coastlines, managing the energy exchange between land and sea; and provide vital ecosystem services such as waste treatment, habitat, food resource, and recreation.
I have been on many research expeditions throughout the Gulf of California, Mexico, where I study these ecosystems and photograph them in action: acting as a nursery for yellow snappers, hosting migratory birds after their long flight, and buffering coastlines against storms.
When I was a child, I found that insects were like marvelous animals full of colors and shapes. While studying and learning about them, I also discovered that they had really interesting behaviors. Now as an iLCP Emerging League Photographer and biologist, I have been photographing insects for the last decade, showing how amazing they are, and highlighting what we could lose if we don’t do something right now.
Started in 2014, my long-term documentary project “Baby Giants” focuses on the conservation work of the critically endangered Kemp’s Ridley and other endangered sea turtles. Help is already underway to bring these sea turtle populations back from the brink, and I get to share this story of hope and invite you to join the efforts for sea turtles.
In early 2010 I pulled together a poster of the ten “Most Wanted” amphibians that led to a global search for frogs and salamanders lost to science. A little battle-weary from the unabated extinction of frogs and their kin, and seeking hope in the face of despair, I was buoyed by the improbable reappearance in Costa Rica of the Variable Harlequin Frog and inspired to wonder: what else might be out there?
What YOU Can Do: Change some simple every day habits. Recycle more and save energy by: using less hot water, using energy safe light bulbs, buying seasonal and locally grown food, using public transportation, switching off the light when you leave a room…. Little daily actions will go a long way and make the difference.…
Throughout my life, I’ve occasionally felt a déjà vu kind of love for certain people, places, and things that I’ve never actually encountered before. Let’s call them les déjà aimés or the already loved. There have been quite a few of these special first-encounters throughout my life: the first eastern box turtle that ever crossed my path; the tadpole filled pond in the woods behind my grandfather’s house; and the blue swell of the Southern Blue Ridge. When I laid my eyes upon a rusty-patched bumble bee for the first time, that old familiar feeling presented itself once again, immediately filling me with a deep surge of compassion for this little bee with an oxidized, orange kiss of color.
Yellowstone National Park, however extraordinary, is not self-sustaining. The ecosystem depends on surrounding “buffer lands” that give wildlife a place to migrate to for fawning season and when Yellowstone is locked in deep snow. Some of those places, like the Upper Hoback, aren’t well known outside of the region, yet as critical to sustainability as Yellowstone itself.
What YOU Can Do: Care for Nature. Purchase sustainably sourced foods. –1Frame4Nature is a collection of images and stories from around the globe of your personal connection to nature. However small, when combined with the actions of others, your individual actions can impact real and tangible outcomes for the preservation of our planet. Submit your story now! iLCP…
iLCP Fellow Jason Houston’s 1Frame4Nature: In September 2016, as part of an ongoing Collaboration with Rare’s global fisheries program, Fish Forever, I spent almost a month in the San Miguel Bay, Philippines. For three of those weeks I lived with Rodel Bolaños, a life-long fisherman, and his family on Caringo Island.
The more we know of our animal neighbors, the more likely we can become effective voices to protect them. Put a face on wildlife by taking photos of them in their urban environment. Are they content and secure in their habitat or at risk now or in the future? Has wildlife around you adapted to humans and structures? Show how you value your wildlife neighbors in your photos or words.
I strongly encourage people to join and support local and international environmental-protection organizations. We only have one planet after all.
This app project is an incredible idea brought to life. There’s a saying “it’s easy to talk about conservation with a full stomach”.
This article is brought to you by the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP). Read our other articles on the National Geographic Voices blog featuring the work of our iLCP Fellow Photographers all around the world. Photos and Text by iLCP Fellow Karen Kasmauski Cat Lodge, a cancer survivor, moved from Pittsburg to Pennsylvania’s Washington County so that she…