Co-founder of the non-profit @sea_legacy and photojournalist for National Geographic. @PaulNicklenGallery
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I realize that this is more of a Facebook post but I could not be more proud of getting an Honorary Doctorate of Science from the University of Victoria, BC last week. To be surrounded by beautiful First People’s art makes this post worthy of @instagram. The hat is not the best look and would overheat my head at -40c let alone a warm auditorium but giving the commencement speech to the hard working graduating class of 2017 was truly an honour and one I will not forget. Another honour was to sit next to a woman of whom I have been a fan for as long as I can remember. Madam Chancellor, Shelagh Rogers (behind my right shoulder) has been inspiring us on the radio since the 80’s. She is a beautiful soul and her shows used to keep me company during the long polar days and nights when I was shooting in the field. Thank you @universityofvictoria for this recognition. I am humbled beyond words and there is so much work to do. Most of all, congratulations class of 2017. #gratitude#humbled#science#nature
For me, it is at this moment that I grab a couple of quick shots, sit down, put my camera away, lean back against a rock along the shoreline, put my hands behind my head and then soak it all in. Some of my best photographs have been taken with just my eyes. #nature#sunset#antarctica#thejourney#naturalbeauty
One more for all of the fathers out there. I hope it was a lazy day as we need your tireless energy tomorrow as we have a planet to fix. #happyfathersday
Happy Father’s Day to all fathers out there within all species. Just like this group of male narwhals I hope you are out reaching for the stars and dreaming big. Have a good one! #happyfathersday#nature#naturelovers
I have seen thousands of Atlantic walrus but have never seen a set of tusks as large as the ones on this huge male. They must have been close to 3 feet long, which is more common for the larger Pacific walrus. Walrus have not been hunted in Svalbard, Norway since 1952. Before that, they were nearly driven to extinction from 350 years of hunting. Now, their population is doing well, but like that of polar bears, walrus rely on ice in order to survive in the Arctic. Ice is where they give birth to their pups, where they rest between clam feeding forays and where they socialize with other walrus. #walrus#nature#wildlife#baby#love#beauty@thephotosociety@natgeocreative
Tomorrow morning I will be giving the commencement speech at the University of Victoria, British Columbia. I know that I never really earned it through proper channels but I am incredibly grateful that I will be receiving an Honorary Doctor of Science degree for my life’s work on climate change and ecosystems. I like to think that I have learned a few things on this journey of life and I cannot wait to talk about resilience, perseverance, passion and living a life with purpose. As with these emperor penguins, I am inspired by their leadership, taking a chance and picking themselves back up when they fall. What message would you have to a bunch of hard working undergrads? #UVIC#uvicgrad@universityofvictoria#almamater#gratitude#nature
After a long day of shooting underwater, I sit on our boat with beer in hand and nature once again slaps you in the face with her intensity and beauty as day turns to night. I give thanks for being immersed in all of the splendor and grandeur of this great planet. May we someday show her the respect that she deserves. #nature#gratitude#beauty#sunset
You know you are in the right position when a humpback whale lunge feeds towards you and you get a look right into its mouth. Look at the anchovies stuck in the baleen of the roof of its mouth. It is strange but my mind is full of all of the images I have missed and without these brief moments of time being recorded on my camera, they would slowly fade from my memory. #gratitude#lucky#nature#naturelovers#whale#humpbackwhale#beauty#whale#memories
#sponsored - Hanging with sea lions, talking conservation, and enjoying a perfect pesto pasta dish (and I didn’t even have to melt snow to make it). Click the link in my bio to see my episode of #WhileTheWaterBoils with @harto & @barillaus.
Just minutes old, a newborn elephant seal pup opens its eyes for the first time and greets its new world of ice, snow and wind in South Georgia, Antarctica. At birth, an elephant seal weighs approximately 50 pounds but within 3 weeks, it may reach an astonishing 400 pounds from its mothers rich milk. She will then wean her pup and head back to sea to replenish her own depleted resources. On this #worldoceansweek , let’s celebrate all creatures in the sea and realize the fragility of our oceans and how we are all interconnected. Our oceans are the foundation of all life on Earth. Come celebrate the ocean this Saturday in #NYC at the @paulnicklengallery. 347 West Broadway. 3 pm to 8pm. @sea_legacy#antarctica#seal#tbt#instagood#worldoceanday#worldoceansweek
Stand up and celebrate #WorldOceansDay!! Please join me, @cristinamittermeier and some of the @sea_legacy team at the @paulnicklengallery on 347 West Broadway #NYC this Saturday as we celebrate #worldoceansweek. We felt very lucky to have Dr. Sylvia Earle in the gallery this week. She is such an eloquent speaker and it rings so true when she says “No Blue, No Green, No Us”. Every second breath we take comes from the ocean. We can either learn to hold our breaths or perhaps we should just protect the lungs and heart of our planet. The concept of sending someone to Mars is pretty cool but why not put that same energy, time and money into protecting our life sustaining, complex and fragile life support system that surrounds us everyday. The air, the water, the soil, the food, the climate are all right here…....balanced to perfection through 4 billion years of evolution and yet we treat it with such disregard and abuse. Come and learn about the things we can do for our planet. #hedoesnotspeakforme#speakfornature#earth#oceans#life#beauty#gratitude#nature
Today, @adriangrenier and I are speaking with @cristinamittermeier at the Paul Nicklen Gallery. Join us today at 1pm EST (10am PST) for a live talk about @lonelywhale, why single use plastics suck, and Adrian's recent appointment as United Nations Environment Goodwill Ambassador at the Oceans Conference.
See my Instagram Story for the link to the Live interview.
Just that time that a pod of narwhals swam by me underwater near Baffin Island. Actually, this moment was six years in the making and I will never forget it. Please come by the @paulnicklengallery this Saturday to hear more stories and share in the beauty of nature. @CristinaMittermeier will be opening her show called 'The Water's Edge'. #nature#fineart#fineartwithpurpose
Hundreds of thousands of King Penguins line a valley floor on South Georgia, Antarctica. We are super excited to be at the @paulnicklengallery this week in #NYC. I will be showing some new of my favorite pieces but more importantly, @cristinamittermeier is opening her gorgeous show called #TheWatersEdge. We can’t wait to see you on Saturday, June 10th. If the turnout is anything like it was on #EarthDay then I am both excited and a bit nervous:). #seeyousoon
Sad to be leaving BC after a short week at home but excited to be heading to an important opening at the @paulnicklengallery in #NYC. @cristinamittermeier is opening her show on the intersection between cultures and nature. We have a bunch of great events going on so be sure to pop in. The main opening is on Saturday, all day. #iphone#hedoesnotspeakforme
It makes me proud that National Geographic is using this image to drive home a point about the biggest issue facing us as a species today. I took this image on a private @Sea_legacy expedition to the Arctic in 2014. National Geographic used it as the lead image in their climate change issue. Al Gore uses this image in his talks and in his books and it was the cover of the climate issue of the Nature Conservancy Magazine. It is also for sale in the @paulnicklengallery as #fineart which will allow us to continue our efforts in the field. Once I take an image, it is time for the image to go to work. We have a lot of work to ahead of us if we are to stand up and protect this ailing planet. #hedoesnotspeakforus#speakfornatue
Framed by a freshly calved piece of glacier ice, a lone male bear travels the coast of Svalbard, Norway. On behalf of all species on this great planet, especially those that wander the polar regions, do not give up; passionate citizens are rallying, only becoming bolder in their voices and actions. It is up to leaders, citizens, educators, consumers and activists who understand the severity of this decision. #follow us on @sea_legacy as we continue to tackle this issue with true science and cameras. #oneearth#thisisouronlyhome
Overnight, a thin layer of ice forms on the surface of the sea surrounding Spitsbergen, Norway. By end of day, the ice will melt. It seemed like a pretty good ice year but in reality it was thin and will soon disappear. This year, we saw very little multi-year ice. That is ice that lasts for many years and is crucial to all species in this ecosystem. #honorparis#climatechangeisreal#resist#action#actionsspeaklouderthanwords@sea_legacy
What appears as a tiny polar bear walking across the sea ice in front of a massive landscape was actually a large male bear walking in front of a small and receding glacier. #fineartwithpurpose#nature#arctic
A flurry of snow rapidly covers the seascape as a mother polar bear frolics with her young, four month old cubs. In order to feed herself and her two growing offspring, she must be an infallible hunter. After a successful hunt, the playful cubs nuzzle and play with their mother, and she, ever patient and tender, endures their affections. As a former biologist who helped work on polar bears, I struggle with satellite radio collars that are put on so many bears. During the spring feeding season, a bear might double or even triple its body weight. An excess of fat is needed to nurture growing cubs, as bears wait for the long Arctic summer to end and for the sea ice to form again. As a bear gains weight, the satellite collar might become so tight around its neck as to choke the bear. Science is important, but when have we gone too far to collect data?
Video by @PaulNicklen for @Sea_Legacy, with @CristinaMittermeier, @samkretch, @erichroepke and @steinretzlaff. Music by @adamnriddle
#sponsored - Had the special opportunity to cook some @barillaus pasta with @harto and share my passion for conservation. We talked about my roots with the Inuit, taking photos with numb fingers, and using social media to bring science to the masses. Click the link in my bio to watch the full episode. What passion would you talk if you were making pasta with @harto#WhileTheWaterBoils?
Today is #EndangeredSpeciesDay and you're going to see a lot of well-meaning posts in your feed about losing species. I want to deliver a message of hope, and of urgency. The humpback was once endangered. It was so close to extinction that many said "let it go." But those who believe in the power of hope and action and policy wouldn't let up. The conservation community stood up for the humpback. Activists stood up for the humpback. Governments made changes. Politicians listened to their constituents. In summary, people didn't give up. They fought. Today the humpback is on the rebound and in healthy numbers. This is where hope gets us. This is where action gets us. Don't give up. Forward, friends. We can do it. We must do it now. #EndangeredSpecies
Based on my years as a biologist, I estimated this bear in Svalbard, Norway to be over 800 pounds. Did you know that a polar bear's stomach can hold an estimated 20% of its body weight? In this case, that would have been 160 pounds of seal meat and blubber. A polar bear generally eats this much only when its energy demands are high. A bear can assimilate 84% of the protein and 97% of the fat it eats. We are back in Svalbard with @sea_legacy looking for polar bears, walrus and healthy sea ice.
I realize that this does not crop well and it is an imperfect photograph but I remember the moment like it was yesterday. I slowly swam up to these male narwhals who were caught up in some sort of mutual admiration display. They were distracted and never picked me up with their echolocation. As I swam in closer, the distant whale started rubbing my head with his tusk. #gratitude. With @Jedweingarten
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