Photo by @migeophoto // After boarding a small boat, I captured this image of a rock structure that stands between Faial and Pico Islands in the Azores. On the way, the sun began dipping behind the island, casting a golden gradient on the rock face. As we approached, we found a cacophony of seabirds hunting inside the small crevice in the center. White rock pigeons made nests on the ledges and their coos echoed across the water. // #faial#azores#pico#faialisland#picoisland#rockpigeon#rockoutcrop#seasunet
Out of 651 people in the Marafoto prison in Madagascar, 45 are women. Photo by @hammond_robin for @witness_change. // Around the world prisons are in crisis. The number of people incarcerated is growing, rates of re-offending remain high and too many prisons are dangerously under-resourced. // Too often it is the poorest, least educated and most vulnerable people who find themselves in prison. // In Madagascar, there are inmates who will never meet a lawyer. Many prisons in the country lack adequate food, sanitation and access to proper medical care, and provide few rehabilitative programmes, educational or vocational opportunities. Children are detained alongside adults. Many young children are living with their mothers in prison.// Inmates in such conditions are at high risk of mental illness. For those who enter the system with psychosocial disability, the stress of prison can make their condition dramatically worse.// In Marofoto Prison, Madagascar, Handicap International has partnered with the Ministry of Justice and the prison authorities to work to prevent psychological distress of detained people, and to ensure the care of inmates living with mental health problems.// #InMyWorld is designed to expose the challenges faced by people living with mental health issues and give them the chance to be seen, heard and valued. This first phase of the project was created in collaboration with Handicap International @handicap_uk as part of Witness Change's work on global mental health. @witness_change is a nonprofit that aims to end human rights violations for marginalized communities through visual storytelling. To see more from this campaign please follow @OneDayInMyWorld.
Video by @TimLaman. Anything to impress the ladies! Two male Goldie’s Birds of Paradise displaying in the canopy on Fergusson Island, Papua New Guinea. Turn on our sound if you dare to hear these noisy birds! This amazing species is only found on two small islands off the E coast of Papua New Guinea, and current population estimate for the entire species is only 650! I’m trying to spread the word about the need for conservation of the Birds of Paradise and all the other spectacular biodiversity in the rain forests of the New Guinea region. Follow me @TimLaman for more photos and videos of birds-of-paradise wildlife and wild places around the world. #Endangered, @BirdsofParadiseProject, #CornellLabofOrnithology, #Endangered, #birdsofparadise, #birdofparadise, #birds, @natgeocreative, @thephotosociety.
Photo by @bethjwald // “Soon Jang-bu calls me down again, for a man has brought the thin elegant lute known as the danyen, its stem carved as the long neck of a swan. Everyone is dancing. More villagers come, filling the smoky room with the companionable smells of human grease and coarse tobacco….. The lute player, a dashing handsome fellow in short smock and boots, smiles at me wholeheartedly in welcome, as if I were his dearest friend on earth….. The dance is a short rhythmic step well suited to small spaces, and very like Eskimo igloo dances, even to the jet-black braids and red-bronze faces and the shuffle of the soft, mukluk-like boots.” From “The Snow Leopard” by Peter Matthiessen.
In mid-October last year, I took this photo of the villagers of #Pugmo, in the remote Himalayan region of Dolpo, singing and dancing at a celebration in the old Bon gompa to the music of a traditional lute, as described above by Peter Matthiessen. I was traveling through Dolpo with renowned conservation biologist George Schaller, following the route Schaller took with Matthiessen in 1973, a journey that become the basis for his famous book, “The Snow Leopard”. Also with us in 2016 was Peter Matthiessen’s son, Alex, Tshiring Lama, a young biologist from Dolpo who is studying the snow leopard in her #mountain homeland, and Peter Werth, who brings renewable energy to #Dolpo villages. We spent five weeks in Dolpo looking at changes to communities, wildlife and habitat. Although there were many aspects of the culture that have endured, like the hospitality given by villagers here in Pugmo, there are also many changes, including the erosion of the role played by spiritual leaders and religion in both the Buddhist and Bon communities. Thanks to National Geographic for a grant that helped support the project. Check out my feed @bethjwald throughout the month to see more photos of our journey. #Bon#Bon-po #religion#dance#traditionalmusic#sacredspaces#buddhism#thesnowleopard#conservationhero#Himalayan#dolpa#Himalaya#nationalgeographic#sheyphoksundonationalpark#onassignment@natgeocreative@thephotosociety@bluemarbleproject
Amazon River Dolphins in the flooded forest, Brazil. Photo by Kevin Schafer – @schaferpho@natgeo – It was the last day of a month-long assignment tracking wild Amazon River Dolphins in Brazil. I already had thousands of pictures for the story, but I was haunted by one idea. Before I left home, the editors has told me: “Don’t just send us portraits - show us how these animals live.” This was going to be critical in telling the story of these astonishing animals, land-locked in fresh water for as much as fifty million years. Evolving as did the Amazon basin itself, they have adapted to a very different world than their ocean-going dolphin cousins. For one thing, they must hunt their prey, not in the open ocean, but literally between the roots of trees and in the branches of the flooded forest canopy. (No wonder they developed a flexible spine, quite distinct from marine dolphins which have fused, rigid spines for speed and power.) Yet the question remained: how to capture these dolphins in the trees. On the last day of the assignment, I still wasn’t sure I had the shot I wanted. I had planned to spend that last day underwater, checking other pictures off my list before I headed home. Then, an accident changed everything - a boisterous dolphin smashed my underwater housing - not an act of hostility, just a case of my being in the wrong place at the wrong moment. Either way, my underwater work was suddenly finished. Wondering how to spend the rest of this final day, I paddled out to a spot my assistant had found for me earlier in the month - a watery “path” through the forest that the dolphins often used to reach a different part of the river. It had never panned out before, but this afternoon I got lucky; a trio of dolphins swam through the flooded treetops right in front of me. It was just the sort of picture I had been hoping for, but had just about given up on. In the end, it was an important image for the story and ran full-page in National Geographic. I lost a camera that day, but I got the picture I wanted. So it goes. #boto#amazondolphin#onassignment