Chris Eckstrom is a writer and videographer whose work celebrates the natural world and explores the coexistence of people and wildlife. https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/2019/03/iran-wildlife-conservationists-jailed/
62 posts
103 following

Photo by @frans lanting i’m sharing this image and text from frans lanting:
“i invite you to join me for my new online photography course, tomorrow, wednesday march 20, at 9:00 am pacific time on creative live. it’s free for anyone to watch live—you only have to rsvp for the course on creativelive’s site. see the link in my bio (@frans lanting). my course will be streamed live and free for 24 hours—in case you're in another time zone.
the course is titled “the art of photographing birds,” and i will share specific techniques as well as creative ideas to help you make better portraits of birds, capture them in flight, and show birds as part of landscapes and human environments. i will share insights about equipment and some of my favorite places to photograph birds. i’ll take you on the field trip i made to california’s sacramento valley with two photography students to capture images of spectacular flocks of snow geese and other waterfowl. as a special feature of this course, i will be offering a critique of a selection of images submitted in advance by you, the audience. i made this image of a toco toucan in a bird park in brazil and turned the amazing colors and patterns of the bird’s face into an abstraction. when you can get this close to birds, a new world of creative possibilities opens up.” @creativelive @thephotosociety #wildlifephotography #birds #birdphotography #toucan #photoworkshop

comment 21 star 3,764 5 days ago

Dear friends, please see frans lanting’s instagram post, shared below, about our scientist friends on trial in iran right now, accused of using wildlife camera traps for espionage. please feel free to share our posts. frans and i welcome your thoughts about how we can increase the outreach for this issue. blessings and peace, chris photo by @franslanting the asiatic cheetah is facing a death sentence. fewer than 50 survive—and only in iran. but some of the best people dedicated to saving these unique cats from extinction are now in jail for their work and may even face the death penalty. they’ve been accused of using camera traps for espionage. but camera traps are only good for one thing—to capture images of animals at close range just like you see here. this rare image of a cheetah in iran was captured by one of my camera traps while on assignment for @natgeo. i worked there with permission and support of iran’s department of environment, and with several of the excellent iranian scientists who have been arrested. they belong to the persian wildlife heritage foundation, but they worked closely with the government, and yet they are now on trial—for charges that are politically motivated. this is horrible for the individuals involved, but it is also a tragedy for the animal which faces extinction. and that is a great loss for everyone in iran because the asiatic cheetah is a powerful symbol for iran’s unique natural heritage.
if you care about cheetahs in asia and the plight of the people whose mission is to protect them, please go to the link in my instagram profile to read the story natgeo just published and spread the word about it. you can also sign a petition to express your concern at care2. search for “conservationists face death penalty in iran." @hrouhani @jzarif_ir @hediyehtehrany @reza_kianian_official @mitra.hajjar @raisi_org @federicamog @leonardodicaprio @hope4nature

comment 236 star 6,846 2 weeks ago

Jaguars are coming back to ibera, a wild wetland in northeast argentina where they have been missing for nearly a century. follow us @christineeckstrom and @franslanting for more about this remarkable story.

@cltargentina @tompkins_conservation @kristine_tompkins @leonardodicaprio fdn @leonardodicaprio #jaguar #rewilding

comment 180 star 6,657 last month

Jaguars are stalk-and-ambush predators. their name comes from a guarani-tupi word meaning “he who kills with one leap,” and this big male is hoping to do just that as he focuses on a distant capybara in the wetlands of brazil’s pantanal—a vast water wilderness in the heart of south america. jaguars are the largest cats in the americas, and the largest jaguars are found in the pantanal, a stronghold for these big cats and other iconic animals of south america like giant anteaters, giant otters, and giant armadillos. this saturday february 2 @franslanting and i will give a special presentation, “the land of the jaguars,” in santa cruz, california at the rio theatre. please join us if you are in our area! tickets are at seymourcenter.brownpapertickets.com or check the seymour center website. follow us @christineeckstrom and @franslanting for more images from the wild wetlands of south america. photo by @franslanting
@seymour_marinediscoverycenter #jaguar #predator #bigcats #pantanal #santacruz

comment 86 star 8,379 last month

“vanishing flight” just 30 years ago, millions of monarch butterflies fluttered in from all over the american west to spend the winter in a few sheltered places along the coast of california, including santa cruz, my home town. thousands of visitors came to see these delicate jewels as they clustered in bright orange masses on boughs of eucalypts and pines, literally coating the trees in stained-glass patterns. on sunny winter days when the temperature climbs above 55 degrees, they fly up and fill the sky like clouds of confetti, then settle back in the trees as the air cools. but since the 1980s, the western population has suffered a catastrophic population crash of 99.4%, due to habitat loss, drought, and pesticides that destroy their food sources. it is heartbreaking. i have seen so few this winter. but we can’t just stand by. all of us can help, even if it’s doing something as simple as planting milkweed and nectar plants for the monarchs. specific plants are really beneficial to the butterflies, and you can find out which ones are best for your region at the @xercessociety , which works to conserve them and has much more information about what you can do to help. photo by @franslanting . follow us @christineeckstrom and @franslanting for more about this iconic migration.

@leonardodicapriofdn @xercessociety #monarchs #endangered #migration #butterfly #santa cruz #montereybay

comment 210 star 10,996 January 2019

The wind was wild on south georgia island when we were there recently! but that’s normal, and all the residents were nonplussed—the king penguins trundled in and out of the sea to bring food for their fluffy brown chicks, a big bull elephant seal arched up as he came in from the surf, and the sideways snow made the king penguin colony look ethereal. the annual gathering of wildlife on the beaches of south georgia is one of the most phenomenal natural spectacles on earth. for me it is very emotional to be in the presence of such unbridled vitality and sheer density of life. it’s even more inspiring when you know that due to the success of a remarkable eradication program, south georgia has been declared rat-free, and millions more birds and other wildlife are repopulating the island—all in a matter of a few years. being here takes your breath away, and fills you with hope, which is the message i want to share for the holidays and the coming new year. follow us @christineeckstrom and @franslanting for more stories about our living planet.

#antarctica #southgeorgia #kingpenguins #southernocean #wonder #wild #naturephotography #ratfree

comment 213 star 8,040 December 2018

Bonobos take care of each other, but we need to take care of them. the beautiful great apes known as bonobos are our closest cousins on the tree of life, along with chimpanzees, but we know so little about them because they live in one of the most inaccessible parts of central africa, in the democratic republic of the congo. only 15,000 bonobos remain in the wild and they are highly endangered by the bushmeat trade.
@franslanting and i undertook an expedition there recently with @ashley_judd, to help raise awareness about bonobos and to support the people who are working to save them, including sally jewell coxe and the bonobo conservation initiative. bci is doing great work with local communities in the congo basin to empower them to protect bonobos and the forest habitat they depend on. you can help support bci’s work by clicking on the link in their instagram feed, @bonobodotorg, and by signing ashley judd’s care2 petition, found in @care2’s instagram feed.
the video clips i’m sharing from our recent trip show bonobos grooming, nursing, and cradling their young—tender moments we can all empathize with. empathy and cooperation are hallmarks of bonobo social life, and the nature of these least known of the great apes helps shine a light on our own human nature. follow us @christineeckstrom and @franslanting for more images and videos from the heart of the congo.

@bonobodotorg, @ashley_judd, @care2, @natureneedshalf, #bonobo, #congo #gratitude #wildlife #family #ape

comment 46 star 4,219 December 2018

Photo by @franslanting the outcome of king penguin love is one fluffy chick, which takes a year to mature. this one has survived the long cold winter when parents go far offshore and rarely come back to feed their offspring. it’s an ordeal for young king penguins and a thick brown downy coat helps them survive. this young king penguin has only a month or so to go before it will be ready to take its first plunge into the frigid waters surrounding south georgia, near antarctica. the seas around the island are brimming with krill which sustains spectacular numbers of penguins, other seabirds, and marine mammals. this is truly one of the great wildlife sanctuaries on the planet and we are thrilled to be on an expedition ship voyaging aroun d this remote island in the southern ocean. follow us @christineeckstrom and @franslanting for more stories about south georgia, the "island of kings." #kingpenguin #penguin #fluffy #happy #f*t #wildlife #nature #southernocean #antarctica

comment 77 star 7,814 November 2018

Photo by @franslanting elephant seals and king penguins crowd the beaches of south georgia island during the austral spring—right now. the wildlife here is dependent on the rich marine resources of the southern ocean that surrounds this remarkable island. the elephant seals in this image were just finishing up their breeding season. the adult king penguins are mixed in with their fluffy brown chicks, who will shed their downy feathers this season and head to sea. follow us @christineeckstrom and @franslanting for more stories from the southern ocean. #southgeorgia #penguins #kingpenguins #southern ocean #conservation

comment 185 star 12,331 November 2018

Standing at the edge of a king penguin colony on south georgia is an overwhelming sensory experience. fluffy brown chicks, their bellies sagging with food, are whistling for their parents—and more to eat. adults are trumpeting, displaying, grooming—and some are just in from the sea with squid to regurgitate to their offspring. it’s easy to see why the early whalers who came here thought they were looking at two separate species of penguin. but underneath each chick's downy feathers, there is a sleek black-and-white bird with bright orange neck patches waiting to make an appearance. follow us @franslanting and @christineeckstrom as we return to south georgia to share more stories of the remarkable wildlife there.
#southgeorgiaisland #kingpenguin #wild

comment 90 star 8,102 November 2018

“dutch light” the view of amsterdam’s singel canal from our hotel window yesterday gave me a sense of the magical quality of light in the netherlands, which is famous for having inspired artists here for centuries. painters like vermeer, monet, and mondriaan were captivated by the luminous light in a country writers have described as “a land of water and sky” and “bathed in light and air.” yesterday was one of those days of glittering radiance and mesmerizing reflections. thank you @franslanting for sharing holland with me.
(photo made with my iphone)
#amsterdam #dutchlight #netherlands #reflections

comment 73 star 4,917 October 2018

When @franslanting received the first-ever lifetime achievement award at the wildlife photographer of the year competition in london the other night, memories of our fieldwork around the world came flooding back for both of us—including our work on assignment for @natgeo in botswana’s okavango delta. we were feeling invincible then, and i was feeling at one with the okavango when i dove in to flow with the current and the soft ribbons of aquatic plants in the heart of the swamp. but i wasn’t thinking about the delta’s prolific crocodiles—and luckily, the crocs weren’t thinking about me. follow us @franslanting and @christineeckstrom for more stories of wildlife and wild places.

@nhm_wpy #okavango #botswana #wild #wonder #crocodiles

comment 59 star 5,313 October 2018