Photo: A male tiger swallowtail butterfly, Papilio glaucas.

Measurable Success for Photo Ark

It was almost too late when I first learned of the Florida grasshopper sparrow’s troubles. Down to just a few hundred in the remnant prairies of central Florida, the bird was in sudden, catastrophic decline, with biologists still unclear why. One morning in the spring of 2012, I accompanied writer Ted Williams and biologist Paul…

The Magnificent Sandhill Crane Migration

Every spring, over half a million cranes stop for several weeks along the Platte River in Nebraska seeking rest, refuge, and nutrition. Watch the photo essay on the CBS Sunday Morning Show.     When the Sandhill cranes first enter Nebraska, they’re so high up they’re all but invisible. You can’t blame them really; they’re…

The Endangered Species Act turns 40

On December 28, 1973 — Richard Nixon signed the ESA, which at the time made us the only nation on Earth to declare a basic right of existence for species other than our own. Watch the ESA photo essay on the CBS Sunday Morning Show. It’s the 1880s, and my fellow Nebraskan has made a…

The Power of Photography: National Geographic 125 Years

The Power of Photography: National Geographic 125 Years will be on display at the Annenberg Space for Photography in Los Angeles, CA from October 26, 2013 through April 27, 2014. The show celebrates the publications’ 125 year anniversary and is open to the public. Building the Ark, Joel’s latest story for National Geographic, is featured…

We’re All Surrounded By Survivors

Look around you. The world is full of cancer survivors, and there are more all the time. Kathy Sartore was first diagnosed with breast cancer seven years ago. She had a recurrence this year, but thanks to early detection, her prognosis is excellent. In August, Cole Sartore, Joel and Kathy’s 18-year-old son, was diagnosed with…

About the Photo Ark

It started simply enough with endangered amphibians. I read an essay on amphibian decline and knew I needed to do something to show these species to the world before they were gone forever.     How to Help  Some support for the project is being provided by National Geographic. The zoos and rescue facilities I’ve worked…

Lion Photo on Cover of 50 Best Pictures

Joel’s photo of a tree-climbing lion in Africa’s Albertine Rift is featured on the cover of NG’s 50 Greatest Pictures special issue. The Ishasha region of Queen Elizabeth National Park is home to some very unusual lions.  Unlike most other members of the species, these lions climb trees to nap during the day, waking up…

Two Photos Highly Commended in Veolia Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition

Two of Joel’s images were selected as Highly Commended in the 2011 Veolia Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition. Photos and the story behind them are below.  Both images are available as a signed print through this site– just click on the image’s title to learn more.     Storm Painting “It was one of…

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