[View the story "A question of choice... and the media heyday..." on Storify]
Aerial Photo Baselines for the Henrys Fork Watershed
We completed a comprehensive aerial survey of the Henrys Fork Watershed in NE Idaho using three different aerial platforms. The resulting 10,000 images are in the public domain and document both the ecology of the river and the impact of human development. The composite photo shown here was created from 10 separate photos taken by balloon camera system.
Rio Condor, Tierra Del Fuego, Chile
Rio Condor is one of the three major rivers in Tierra Del Fuego where sea run brown trout spawn. Along with the Rio Grande and Rio Yrigoyen, the three rivers comprise a major eco-tourism fishing industry in the southern reaches of Patagonia. Our work here centers around the protection of native fish species and the impact of these invasive species like the sea run brown trout on the ecosystem. The sea run brown trout in the Rio Condor came from California over 100 years ago. Their adaptation and survival is an important story in the protection of native fish from extinction.
Colorado River Delta and the Sea of Cortez
The Colorado River Delta once covered almost 2 million acres of wetlands but agricultural development and irrigation have reduced the Delta to less than 5% of its original size. And with 100% of Mexico's allocation of the Colorado going to farming and urban use, the Colorado River no longer flows to the Sea of Cortez. But a band of conservation minded people are working to restore the Delta by acquiring water, removing invasive species and educating the community about the culture and heritage of this ecosystem. Our film "Hope for the Colorado River" documents this work. The photo here is the lower delta where the 5 meter tides from the Sea of Cortez never touch fresh water.
Aerial Survey of the Kimberley, Western Australia
We have begun a long term project to document the coastal regions of the Kimberley and Pilbara in NW Australia. The region contains 32 different aboriginal clans that date back 40,000 years and has a estimated mineral wealth over $58B. It also has one of the largest humpback whale populations of over 30,000 animals. The growing conflict over cultural and environmental protection verus wealth extraction is a subject of both a citizen science project and documentary film. In this picture, the king tides in the Fitzroy Delta exceed 36 feet and create these intricate patterns in the mud flats.
Port Hedland Harbor and Iron Ore Exports
Iron Ore processing plant at the Pilbara coastal port of Port Hedland. Over 60 ore trains each day deliver ore to the port for shipping to China and India. Australia is the largest iron ore exporter in the world and Port Hedland alone exports over 200 million tons per year and is the highest tonnage port in the country. The impact of this massive operation on the marine environment is yet to be quantified and is the subject of our project with Murdoch University Cetacean Research Unit in Perth, WA.
Down the Colorado Expedition and Public Maps
Down the Colorado is a project of Colorado College students to document the human and environmental condition of the Colorado River Basin. Over two expeditions, the team traveled by kayak and raft the entire 1700 length of the Colorado River from its headwaters in Wyoming to the Sea of Cortez in Mexico.
Citizen Science and Coastal Walkabout
Coastal Walkabout is a massive citizen science project started in 2012 to document the coastal and marine life in Western Australia. The goal is to engage citizens along the 4000 mile coastline to document marine life and the impact of mining, oil and gas exploration on the marine environment.
Illegal Fish Trade in Argentina
There is a thriving illegal fish trade in the Parana River between Argentina and Paraguay. The Golden Dorado, the national fish of Argentina, is regularly caught and transported through Paraguay to fish buyers in Brazil. Even with a full time presence of the Argentina Navy, the industry continues to thrive. We have funded work to document both the poacher techniques and government and citizen response to the illegal fishing.
Legal Fish Trade in America
The US was the largest importer of billfish for food until the Billfish Conservation Act was signed in October, 2012. Now only Hawaii and regions of the Pacific can catch and sell billfish. We have actively funded and participated in the protection of pelagic fish including billfish, bluefin tuna and dolphinfish. Our current app project - Fishtagger - is a new citizen science tool to protect the marine ecosystem.
Where we work
Rio Parana, Argentina Update We just returned from 6 days on the Rio Parana in northern Argentina where we stayed at the home of Peto Nogare in Itati (see green placemark on map below). The river is the border between Paraguay and Argentina, home to dense jungles along the banks, massive estancia rice plantations further [...]
The Kimberley region of Western Australia is full of riches. From the 40,000 year cultural history of the Traditional Owners to the wild and now protected Montgomery Reef to the billions of dollars of iron ore, oil, gas, diamonds and coal in the ground, this remote place is the next frontier in the battle [...]
Andy Quinn and I have just returned from a week at Freshwater Cove, a remote fish camp near Montgomery Reef in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. Home to some incredible 12 meter tides, the camp was a meet up place for us with Peter Tucker and Mark Jones of Save The Kimberley nonprofit, a [...]
There is a great article in The Conversation, an Australian media website, that talks about the growing conflict between Aboriginal Clans of Australia and the Green Enviro organizations. The article can be read from here. The article was sent to me by Tim Dykman who runs the Ocean Revolution, a project sponsored as well [...]
The 4 man Arctic Row team ended its expedition after 1000 miles and 41 days attempting to be the first to row across the ice free Arctic Ocean from Canada to Russia. Incredibly bad weather trapped them behind shore ice for days at a time and then gale force storms kept them stuck in a [...]