A little different take on a common Bahamian seascape. A Healthy Caribbean Reef Shark over a flat sandy bottom. It never gets old for me. One of my favorite places to go diving and spend time with my finned friends. @sea_legacy@3stringsproductions
Photo by: John and Jane Doe. // This is what happens to farmed fish in open-net ocean pens. This situation is extremely harmful for the fish, bad for the surrounding environment and probably not something you’d want eat if you saw it at a fish market. It’s time to get the open net fish farms out of British Columbia waters. Further more, they are operating on First Nation land without permission. Just thought you’d hate to see this photo but appreciate the information. I’m standing with my friends @sea_legacy@paulnicklen@cristinamittermeier who are up there right now. Follow the link in @sea_legacy bio to add your voice. // UPDATE: This of course depends on the particular farm, the majority of farmed salmon aren't deformed like this and since the fish are in cages and not exposed to predators, the weaklings, which would normally be eaten in the wild, are able to survive. The fact remains, Aquaculture has incredible potential for both good and bad, has a long way to go and should not be happening on First Nation land. (Thanks for the info Tina Oldham)
When @paulnicklen has idea he becomes completely consumed with it. So, after he spotted a beautiful large sponge on the sunset dive, he came up to the surface, gathered the team and explained his idea, which was basically: "We come back after dark, before the storm hits and follow me to 100 feet. We'll light the sponge from above, simulating the moon and wait for sharks and groupers to come in." Obviously we were all-in and didn't have to wait long as sharks arrived upon entry. The 20 minutes that proceeded was a beautifully lit show of how a healthy Caribbean reef looks at night. The memory is still more like a dream and a reality. I can't wait to see his footage. Enjoy this short behind-the-scenes clip. Thanks for the vision Paul and for the experience! #teamwork#turningthetide with @sea_legacy@cristinamittermeier@paulnicklen@iankellett_story@mdalio@samkretch / music @davisharwellmusic
The sperm whale is the largest toothed predator on Earth, rich in lore and history. I had hoped to film these gentle giants on a recent marine expedition to the Azores, a Portuguese archipelago made up of nine volcanic islands in the North Atlantic Ocean. After an exhausting afternoon working in rough seas with poor visibility, I finally slipped in and drifted with the current into a large pod of calves socializing on the surface. Within minutes, several large adults rose from the depths and circled me. Moments later they effortlessly disappeared back into the deep. With @thejoelepore@waittfoundation
: @paulnicklen getting up close and personal with a large American Crocodile during a sunset thunderstorm in Gardens of the Queen, Cuba. Paul and I worked together to capture this unique perspective in the mangroves until well after dark. Pushing our creative boundaries through lighting, floating 30 pound @reddigitalcinema cameras at split level & choosing difficult working conditions all paid off in these unforgettable scenes. Team work makes the dream work, they say, and I'm lucky to be surrounded with passionate filmmakers and photographers @sea_legacy who raise each other up and work tirelessly to create stories with impact. #Turningthetide with @cristinamittermeier, @paulnicklen@samkretch, @mdalio and @iankellett_story
Thanks @cristinamittermeier for capturing this beautiful image of me working with the crocodiles down in Cuba. Unforgettable day! It was an honor to work with @sea_legacy over the last few weeks in Gardens of the Queen. I learned so much from @paulnicklen@cristinamittermeier@samkretch & @captik_iank. Proud to be on such an amazing team of storytellers. // Repost @sea_legacy ・・・
Photo: @cristinamittermeier, with @andy_mann / Supported by a bed of eelgrass, the very existence of which is a testimony to a healthy ecosystem, our first encounter in Jardines de la Reina -Gardens of the Queen, Cuba, was with this mighty crocodile. The crocs are abundant here, sheltering themselves in clusters of thriving mangroves.
Steeped in history that has both polarized and unified people all over the world, Cuba’s dedication to using science as a guiding principle in policy making is a shining example of conservation in action; one that other places in the world can learn and benefit from.
The Cuban government established a 367-square-mile marine preserve here in 1996, tightly restricting tourism and banning all fishing except for lobster, a crucial element in Cuba's economy.
Our visit comes less than a month after Hurricane Irma struck the Camaguey Archipelago as a category 5. While the Gardens of the Queen is unaffected by Irma’s wrath, Cuba’s marine science and conservation community was not. Jardines del Rey, or the Gardens of the King, was hit hard and two of Cuba’s most important marine research stations suffered extensive damage. With relations between the US and Cuba stabilizing and a potential tourism and development boom on the horizon, rebuilding is perhaps more crucial now than ever before. Cuba needs to maintain its 20-year history of exemplary marine conservation.
The wave has a mind of its own. One moment it's glass calm and the next it's a true sea monster. Never did it have a swell. It literally rose from the deep. I've never seen anything like it since. Taken in the Salvage Islands #onassignment for @natgeopristineseas.
A large Oceanic Whitetip Shark startles me off Cat Island, Bahamas. Shark eyelids serve to protect the eye in vulnerable situations. Some sharks have a nictating membrane, (seen here), or a clear membrane that covers the eye in when attaching prey. In this case, only a curious pass, but a good reminder to be aware of your surroundings when sharing the water with these magnificent animals. @sea_legacy@natgeo@moorecharitable
Freediver (@seabacon) shows how to properly redirect an incoming shark. With gloves on, he'll gently guide the nose of this Oceanic Whitetip to the right if she doesn't change course in time. Sharks are NOT senseless killers as they are often portrayed in the media. An interaction like this can have a lasting impact your life, fill you with joy and change the way you think about our oceans. @sea_legacy@moorecharitable@roam@sonyalpha#alphacollective
Be the change you want to see in the world and surround yourself with people who empower you to do so. @paulnicklen & @cristinamittermeier are two of those people for me and I'm excited to be heading to Cuba next week for a diving expedition with them, bringing to light the importance of protected marine areas in the Carribean. As a member of @sea_legacy I plan to spend the rest of my life doing my part to educate the world (particularly world leaders) on the importance of a healthy and vibrant ocean. // Shot on assignment for @natgeo@sea_legacy in Antarctica earlier in the year as this dynamic duo prepares for a day of diving with Leopard Seals. @sonyalpha#alphacollective
Well hello there little lady. This beautiful Oceanic Whitetip arrived off the deep bank and into the shallows with me for a few fun minutes. I'm looking straight down here and she's coming straight up. A rare composition for a pelagic shark. What a beauty! Sending love to the Caribbean as they brace for an uncertain week ahead. . @sea_legacy
The #polarbear is the largest land carnivore on Earth, and in my opinion, the most spirited. It's an honor and a privilege to photograph these bears. I'll be heading to #svalbard with my good friend @ladzinski where we will be leading a trip with @naturalworldsafaris photographing these amazing animals and the beautiful landscapes of Svalbard. If you're interested in joining us please visit @naturalworldsafaris for more info!
My gratitude for our oceans is immeasurable. Without a single doubt, if I had the choice of flight or lungs, I'd lurk in the deep blue with this cast of colorful characters. Oceanic Whitetip Shark and his compadre, Pilot Fish. Once the most abundant large predator on the planet, the Oceanic Whitetip now faces near extinction with populations plummeting nearly 99% in some studies. WTF? #stopsharkfinning@moorecharitable@sea_legacy@ceibahamas
One of our world's great artists, Aurora Borealis, paints on the night sky over Southeast Greenland. // I spent this night bivied on the roof of our small boat as the 7 of our crew along with 38 overpacked expedition bags fought for space on the cramped 20 foot Viknes which was giving us a lift back to the airfield at Kulusuk. I definitely made the correct decision, despite almost being rocked off into the Arctic icy waters a few times in my sleep. @mikelibecki@ladzinski@ethan_pringle@connor_seybert@dell@mountainhardwear#dellrugged
Pure exhaustion. // Touching into service now for the first time in 6 weeks and I'm glad to see the world is still spinning (though I haven't confirmed that yet through my news feed.) I'm so excited to share the details and stories of this unforgettable expedition here over the next few weeks. After many harsh setbacks, we banded together and arrived at the summit of a first ascent steep granite tower near Thor's Land, Greenland. The new route, lead by @ethan_pringle and followed by @mikelibecki likely involves the most technically difficult rock climbing in Greenland. @ladzinski and I were there to capture the experience. Here, the two take a brief rest after a summit push that went well into the night. Faint northern lights tickle the horizon. Thanks @mikelibecki for another unforgettable adventure! And thanks to @dell@mountainhardwear@reddigitalcinema for the support and belief in this project. I'm ready to be home with the fam now @orienstar#josiejune // @connor_seybert@3stringsproductions // Shot on #A9@sonyalpha#alphacollective
#sponsored // I've been finding some time for myself lately. There's something about a winding mountain road and putting the phone on airplane mode that's good for the soul. Sometimes my life seems to fly by so quickly that, ironically, taking a drive can actually slow things down for me. Every mile has a story to tell. Where will the @MINIUSA#NewCountryman take you? Find out at natgeo.com/countryman.