Tag archives for wildlife

Monday I’ve never been so intrigued by the sex lives of animals as to gawk at the television when David Attenborough is narrating mammalian copulation, but TV is quite a different matter than sitting ten feet away from a grown male lion as he impregnates one of the lionesses in his pride, with a growl.…

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again—the freedom to travel is the greatest freedom of all. Most of us take it for granted—we walk, drive, fly and ride wherever we please. Sometimes a road gets blocked for construction, or a flight gets cancelled—perhaps we get annoyed and frustrated, but in the end, we…

My very first job out of high school was cleaning up roadkill, all along the highways and back roads in my county. It was very depressing. There’s nothing like picking up dead deer and smushed racoons all summer to convince a kid that going to college isn’t such a bad idea. It also had a…

Never schedule wildlife into your calendar, because they probably won’t show. Grizzly bears are the elusive megafauna of the Canadian Rockies and the mere knowledge of their presence had me on the hunt, hoping to catch a glimpse of the impressive animal. My search for bears was accompanied by an entire film crew, as well…

Darwin didn’t have a camera, but he would have made a superb photographer.  His sketches and lengthy descriptions of animals in the Galápagos reveal a traveler who observed everything with curiosity and recorded in colorful detail. We should all learn from him. To this day, I am more of a traveler with a camera than…

Dear Jane Goodall, Greetings from Gombe National Park, which you brought to our attention not so long ago. I never thought I’d make it to this little sliver of mountain forest on the shores of Lake Tanganyika, but somehow, the fates landed me on the same beaches that you continue to walk ever since you…

Sunset in Saadani

Dear @USelaine, I am only writing to you first because it is late at night and I can always count on you to be awake. No matter what time zone I am in, you are on Twitter and as social media friends go, you are as dependable as the fire department. This morning at breakfast…

We speak of the blue planet, and praise the beauty of our living green Earth, but I am swiftly discovering that much of our world is simply brown. This is not a bad thing. Brown can be beautiful when it goes on forever, as it does on the plains of the Serengeti in Tanzania. The…

I keep returning to the places I love most and South Georgia is one of them. South Georgia is the largest bit of land in my ocean crossing from Cape to Cape, a 100-mile long stretch of impervious mountains that rise straight up from the cold polar waters of the Antarctic Convergence. Once the haunt…

I admit I have a thing for penguins . . . . . . but then again, who doesn’t? Perhaps it’s the way they mimic us humans: walking upright, nuzzling their mates, or slapping each other on the back. Or else it’s the way they are different from us: surviving and thriving in the most…

Baby Alligators

I say, nothing’s cuter than a baby alligator, especially when you get to cradle it in your hands! I know I’ve been lucky with my wildlife encounters. So far in my travels I’ve been able to cuddle baby Tasmanian Devils, swim with baby sharks,  hatch baby green sea turtles,  and feed a baby moose.

Wild Life

I’m quickly discovering that Québec’s wildlife tends towards the ubiquitous, big (!) and très accessible. In the past two weeks I’ve been lucky enough to meet so many of the animals that populate Canada’s biggest province, from giant whales to awesome wolf cubs. Every experience with animals offers a new appreciation for this place and…

Whalespotting

I had a dream the other night. I dreamt that I was surrounded by whales—at least a dozen of them, swimming at me from every angle. They came right up to me, from the front and from behind, then whispered in long gasps, one after the other—gasp, sigh, gasp. Did you know that whales whisper?…

After the excitement of Canada Day and the pastoral idyll of the farm, I turned my wheels westward and set off into the wild. Algonquin Provincial Park lies less than three hours from Ottawa. In fact, Algonquin is probably the most accessible wilderness area in Ontario, given that 12 million people live within a three-hour…