Global BC News has now covered the campaign to protect the old-growth forests of Echo Lake on the Lower Mainland! Their focus is on the bald eagles, of which hundreds often roost in the giant Douglas-fir trees around the lake. I was able to provide Global with some eagle footage that I've shot over the past few years. It's always been painfully cold while filming them in winter so I'm happy to see the efforts pay off :) They've also included a gallery with some of my images at the bottom of the article. Follow the link to check it out! http://globalnews.ca/news/1906359/clear-cutting-threatens-echo-lake-eagle-colony/
Yesterday's Globe and Mail featured one of my eagle images along with a story on our campaign to protect the old-growth forests around Echo Lake near Vancouver, the world's largest night roosting site for bald eagles. About 60% of the ancient forests around the lake were protected from logging in 2013 but the remaining 40% are still at risk. In 2014 we hosted a "Bio-Blitz" which resulted in the discovery of some rare and endangered species as well. It's high time that the BC government steps in to protect this incredible ecological treasure.
• Read the Bio-Blitz press release here: www.ancientforestalliance.org/news-item.php?ID=868
• Read the Globe and Mail article here: www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/race-is-on-to-save-fraser-valleys-bald-eagles-echo-lake-old-growth-forest/article23576358/
A big thanks to all those who voted in the Hemp & Company Eco-Hero contest! I'm humbled to have tied for first with Misty MacDuffee of Raincoast Conservation Foundation. Congrats to each nominee as well, all of whom are doing amazing work in the local community. Anybody devoting time and energy each day towards making the planet a better place is an Eco-Hero to me! And thanks of course to Hemp & Company for showing leadership in recognizing citizen conservation efforts: http://www.hempandcompany.com/blogs/news/17382957-t-j-watt-of-the-ancient-forest-alliance-and-misty-macduffee-of-the-raincoast-conservation-foundation-winners-of-our-2015-eco-hero-award
While visiting Tofino last weekend, my partner Jackie and I were treated to a fantastic little boat tour by local photographer Jeremy Koreski. Not only is Jeremy a highly talented photographer but he's also a very kind and generous human as well. On his new boat, we zipped around the Tofino coastline before getting dropped off for a hike on Meares Island's Big Tree Trail. The forest there truly lives up to its name. Clayoquot Sound is in a class of its own and I hope to spend more time there this year exploring its wild reaches. Big thanks to Jer for the tour and congrats to him as well on success in the Capturing the Coast contest :) Here are some shots from the day.
It was awesome to visit Tofino and be in the company of fantastic photographers for Raincoast Education Society's inaugural Capturing the Coast photo event. Submissions were to include images captured on the west coast of Vancouver Island which "inspire people to explore, adventure and respect the region, and highlight the importance of stewardship and conservation." Here's the slideshow I created. It's a tour through some of my favorite places from Sooke to Port Renfrew, the West Coast Trail, Carmanah/Walbran areas, and Clayoqout Sound. Be sure to watch in HD ;)
I'm honoured to be among the 6 finalists nominated for Hemp & Company's inaugural Eco-Hero award! Lots of great people & friends doing amazing things. Voting is open until Feb. 28th at the bottom of this page: http://www.hempandcompany.com/pages/vote-for-your-favorite-eco-hero
Big thanks to Bill and Lorna at Hemp & Company as well for running an exceptionally green business in Victoria and for promoting and supporting sustainability wherever they can.
In late 2014 I had the chance to photograph friend and fellow environmentalist Claudia Li for the Local Hero section of Canadian Wildlife magazine. Claudia is a co-founder of the Hua Foundation, who's mission is "to build solutions for the Hua community, the ethnic Chinese community, around environmental sustainability and cultural heritage." She has also been leading Shark Truth, a project which focuses on shark conservation and the shark-fin issue. To highlight her work in promoting healthy, local, and organic eating within the Chinese community, I was looking for a vibrant market to shoot at. After hunting the streets for a couple hours and almost turning up empty handed, I met up with Claudia and went to a colorful store that she'd been directly working with. The setting was perfect and we managed to capture the shot during a short break in sidewalk traffic. Big thanks to Claudia and to the market owner for working with me on this! Gear: Canon 5D MKII, Canon 70-200 f4 IS, Canon 580ex Speedlite.
Mountain Life Magazine has published a little feature on the new Ancient Forest Alliance documentary along with some questions and answers from friend and filmmaker Darryl Augustine. You can check out the article and view the short film (which highlights some of the conservation photography work I do) here: http://www.mountainlifemag.ca/2015/01/saving-giants-ancient-forest-alliance/ It was great to work with Darryl on this - especially with the RED Epic camera - and I highly recommend him for any of your video needs! Very professional, kind, and talented individual.