Paul Nicklen @paulnicklen

Co-founder of @SeaLegacy. @NatGeo contributor. @SonyAlpha

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Paul Nicklen photos and videos

4 hours ago

Photo by Charlie Hamilton James @chamiltonjames | Fires raged in the Brazilian Amazon during 2017 in Araribóia, indigenous territory in the state of Maranhão. Some were started by farmers trying to clear land for crops or cattle, others started to cover up illegal logging operations, and some were natural. When these images were shot, the Brazilian Amazon had just experienced its worst year on record for forest fires—now 2019 is likely to eclipse that. Maranhão, like so many other states within the Amazon, has been extensively logged, and just a few pockets of original forest remain. The rest of the land has been turned over to agriculture and cattle ranches. Within a few miles of where these pictures were taken live some of the last remaining uncontacted Awã people—made famous across the world a few weeks ago, when footage of them was released. The forests in Araribóia are protected by a disparate group of underfunded firefighters made up of brave and dedicated Guajajara tribe members, volunteers, and FUNAI (the National Indian Foundation ) employees who take on fires, sometimes armed with nothing more than machetes. Repost from @natgeo

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2 days ago

Just a guy and his dogs. They are still weak and tired from their journey and hopefully they learned that running away can be a dangerous affair. #family #dogs #pets #arareselfie

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4 days ago

Continuing on with my series of sleeping animals. As a photographer, being a fly on the wall is the ultimate goal. The more relaxed a wild animal is, the more natural it will behave and the better the photographs will be. Then, of course there was the time that a polar bear grabbed a chunk of snow and went to sleep with it like a teddy bear. From my book, Born To Ice! #borntoice #photography #wildlife #sleepinganimals #love #beauty #cute #instagood

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4 days ago

Our puppies are sleeping practically non-stop after their 2 day sojourn through the wilds of BC. It makes me think about other species who are experts at resting, sleeping and conserving energy. The only goal for baby harp seals is to drink as much milk as possible, rest as much as possible and gain as much weight as possible. Their life depends on it. #rest #sleep #recover #life #love #beauty

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5 days ago

Found. We landed on Vancouver Island an hour ago and after being gone for 44 hours, they responded to @cristinamittermeier calling them, 15 km from their point of departure. They were hiding under a shed at a log sort site along the ocean. Thank you everyone for all of your support and kind messages. I think we need to change their names to Houdini one and two. Thank you everyone for helping us look for them. @phylliskane @davidduchemin @chelsie x.b @nat groulx #Michelle #Anette and Dave!

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2 weeks ago

Back to the humpback whales of Monterey Bay. When I see fog that is thicker than pea soup, I get excited. At some point that fog will burn off and as it does, you get fogbows, dramatic light, mood, patterns and in this case a humpback whale diving down on a school of anchovies. Taken #onassignment for @sealegacy Shot on the Sony a7RIII @sonyalpha #nature #whales

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2 weeks ago

It has been an awesome @sealegacy fundraising mission to #NYC and we fly at 5am tomorrow morning to continue filming humpback whales and their relationship to the foundation fish species of anchovies. Shot #onassignment for @sealegacy with @nathangarofalos @jonmccormackphoto @kyle roepke, @cristinamittermeier and @siren_excursions

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2 weeks ago

It is hard enough being a mom. Imagine being a mom in a place where there is no place to hide or no reprieve from constant threats. There are poachers, male lions, hyenas and other threats and challenges. It was truly a privilege to have her allow us into her world. #hereistoallthemomsoutthere #gratitude #nature #love #beauty With @liannanixon and @ericnixonphoto

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2 weeks ago

Announcement below! I grew up in the Canadian Arctic, and have carried it with me everywhere I go since my childhood. Every time I go back it's like going home. Visiting Antarctica is somehow both different and the same; to be there is to feel like I belong. I've dedicated my life's work to sharing these far-off places with the rest of the world because they deserve to be recognized and protected, and because they are important to me the way anybody's hometown is important them. Today, I found out "Polar Obsession 360," a film that I worked on for @NatGeo and which received two Webby awards this past spring, has just been nominated for an Emmy. I am honoured, and I hope that this acknowledgement will bring more public awareness to the beauty and fragility of our polar ecosystems. The lives we live everyday have a direct impact on this part of the world. HUGE congratulations to my team! @NatGeo , @blackdotfilmsvr @CristinaMittermeier , @Ladzinski , Ignacio Ferrando Margelí, Frederic Lilien, Shane Moore, @pattersonimages , @RodolfoWerner , @CraigWelch , @andy_mann , Dion Poncet. Thank you team!!

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2 weeks ago

Monday morning. This is how I feel after a red-eye flight from Monterey, California to New York for @Sealegacy meetings. After 6 nights of fours of sleep, I am feeling a little exhausted, a little playful and ready for the next adventure. Learning to sleep like a bear. #bear #nature

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2 weeks ago

Epic day of filmmaking of whales in #MontereyBay for @sealegacy with @idoaerials and @cristinamittermeier 🎥 @kyle roepke

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2 weeks ago

On a rare occasion, if you sit quietly for long enough, you will be rewarded with acceptance by a wild animal. It all comes down to patience, gentle movements and body posture. Coastal sea wolves, like this one I filmed on a remote island off the coast of British Columbia, have a unique culture of their own and are, perhaps, a subspecies of wolf. For @sealegacy #nature

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3 weeks ago

Turn up your volume. Some people call me an activist, but to be honest, when you look into the eyes of a wolf from 20 feet away and listen to their haunting and mournful howls, how can you not vow to protect all that they are and all that they represent. If caring for wildlife and nature makes me an activist then I am proud to call myself one. If I am not active then I am inactive and there is no time left for the latter. For those who support the work we do at @sealegacy , we thank you for helping create this movement. Filmed while on assignment for @sealegacy with @ryantidman and @scottymbarnes Edited by @chelsie_x_b #nature #wolf #howl #explore #seawolf #gratitude

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3 weeks ago

Tug-of-war is a common game with wolf pups. A piece of kelp, a branch or in this case, an eagle feather served as the perfect item to use in their antics. #wolf #seawolf #play #wildlife #photography #nature #naturelovers

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3 weeks ago

Wait for it! How many wolf pups can you count? It is one thing to get a glimpse of a rare sea wolf and something completely different to have a mother approach our @sealegacy film team with all of her pups. The rest of the pack was off looking for food and she could not have been anymore accepting. With @samkretch @cristinamittermeier @tylerisaacson and @oren lawson #nature #naturelovers #wolf #explore @reddigitalcinema

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3 weeks ago

It is important to look back from time to time, reflect, give thanks and have gratitude for all of those who have helped us along the way. Hard to imagine the journey ahead for this newborn leucistic Antarctic fur seal. #gratitude #antarctica

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3 weeks ago

Can you see the wolf? Just because we don’t see them it does not mean that they don’t see us. When I am out in nature I often get a feeling that I’m being watched. When that happens, I stop, sit down quietly and remain motionless. Often I am rewarded with glimpses of an elusive and shy animal. This sea wolf was there for a second and then, like a ghost, it melted back into the forest. #nature #wolflove #beauty #patience

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2 weeks ago

Today, we have an opportunity to stand up for 18 shark and ray species, including the endangered mako. If the world votes YES on adding makos to @CITES Appendix II, it could mean the difference between this shark's survival or its extinction. Mako sharks are hunted for their fins and meat, which are highly valuable on international markets. They often die as bycatch in long-line fisheries as well, and they're not alone. Humans kill 100 million sharks each year. These animals regulate the systems that ensure our ocean stays healthy and abundant. We cannot afford to lose them. Join me, @SeaLegacy , @CristinaMittermeier and @ShawnHeinrichs in #TurningTheTide for #makos Support #CITES4Sharks sign your name through the link in my bio; ask Canadian Ministers @jonathanwnv and @cathmckennaottcen to stand up for sharks and switch Canada's vote to “YES” -- protecting the mako and fulfilling their commitment to Canada’s role in environmental leadership. 📸: @ShawnHeinrichs With @shawnheinrichs @bluespherefoundation @vulcaninc @thewcs @sharkconservationfund @thelifeofrileynz

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3 weeks ago

How do sharks feel? They have incredible senses, especially smell. However, they often touch objects with their mouth. The key with sharks is to remain calm. That can be easier said than done when approached by a 14 foot tiger shark. This large tiger was attracted to my camera. It must have been the electric current coming from the camera. I let the shark mouth it for a second and then she went on her way. Once you spend enough time with these sharks, you realize how intelligent, sensitive, and cautious they are. Which makes it even harder to fathom that around the world, humans kill more than 11,000 sharks every single hour. Think about that for a second. As awful as that number is, the good news is that as a team we all have the power to start #TurningTheTide for sharks. #Follow @sealegacy as we work to raise awareness and protect sharks and rays around the world, starting with the endangered mako shark. #CITES4Sharks #CoP18Sharks @reddigitalcinema

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3 weeks ago

Everywhere we go in the world as conservationists, all we do is talk about what's disappeared; what once was. In the Bahamas, where 650,000 square kilometers of territorial waters have been declared a Shark Sanctuary by law, it’s another story. Sharks are almost always the apex predator in their respective habitats, and they are crucial regulators because of it, gliding through the water, overseeing their domains like kings and queens. We know because we can look at ecosystems through time that when you remove the apex predator, the whole system crumbles. We can’t have healthy oceans without sharks. I hope that the work that I do with @SeaLegacy and that by sharing videos like this one I can help change public perceptions of these beautiful and curious and powerful fish. As humans, we need to do more to protect them. Join me and @SeaLegacy as we work to find solutions that will change the future for sharks around the world. Footage from a @SeaLegacy #expedition #SharkWeek #TurningTheTide

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4 weeks ago

Well, it is shark week and I am going to be posting nothing but for the next few days. I was thinking this morning that I don’t have much experience with sharks but then I did some rough math and have had the good fortune to swim with over 20 species of sharks from all around the globe, including tigers, bulls and this blue shark. Never have I had a thought of fear, worry, concern. I have had a lot of respect and appreciation but that is different. I have always been in awe. As a kid, I was terrified of sharks but I was damaged by Jaws like so many. Have you been in the water with sharks? What is your relationship to them? Do you fear for them and do you worry about their future? Do you understand their overall importance in keeping an ecosystem in balance? Let’s get the conversation started. #sharks #sharkweek #nature #wefearwhatwedontknow

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4 weeks ago

A few years ago, we were finishing up our story on the Hawaiian culture and their connection to the sea. @oceanramsey and @juansharks introduced us to their connection to the great sharks of Hawaii. Here, Ocean swims with a large, gentle and graceful tiger shark offshore from the Hawaiian Islands. We spent an hour with this inquisitive shark and I found incredible peace and calm while swimming with her. Many Hawaiians believe that sharks like this one could be their Aumakua, a family God or deified ancestor returning to visit them in the sea. There are many stories of nā ʻaumākua (in animal form ) intervening to save their descendants from harm. It is extremely bad luck to harm an Aumakua. This is in sharp contrast to the mass slaughtering of sharks that take place on a daily basis around the world. For that we are going to work tirelessly to change. #shark #tigershark #nature #gratitude

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4 weeks ago

Have you ever looked into the mouth of a humpback whale? I had not either until I took this photograph in Monterey Bay, California. I knew that baleen lined the edges of the mouth but I never realized that it lined the roof of the mouth also. Once a whale engulfs a school of fish and hundreds of gallons of water along with it, they use their massive tongue to expel the water while retaining these fatty little fish called anchovies. This is what I love the most about photography. It forces me to stay longer, wait for the right moment, watch, observe, learn, wait some more and then voila in a fraction of a second, there is a moment in time, recorded, never to be lost, to share, educate and make us care a little more for these leviathans of emerald seas. #nature #whale #ocean

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4 weeks ago

Let’s look inside the mouths of two humpback whales while they lunge-feed on anchovies just because we can. Look at all of that baleen. Have you seen a baleen whale before? #nature #animals #whales #love #beauty

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4 weeks ago

At @sealegacy we are breaching for joy. Against an influx of seemingly insurmountable odds, there is good news to share. I was blown away last year when over 200 thousand of you made a commitment with @sealegacy to not to travel to Iceland in light of the commercial whaling that still takes place there. Our team collaborated with other conservation organizations committed to #StopTheHunt , putting pressure on Iceland and the International Whaling Commission. This summer, no whales are being hunted in Icelandic waters. We have a lot of work left to do to make this a permanent reality, but one powerful action, as small as signing a petition, can make a difference. Thank you for showing up time and time again when we ask. The power we hold together is stronger than anything alone. Further help the fight to end all commercial whaling by heading to the link in my bio and becoming a member of The Tide. #StopTheHunt #RaiseTheTide #StopIcelandWhaling #WorthMoreAlive

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4 weeks ago

Can you spot the eye of this lunge-feeding humpback whale? I would close my eye too if I had hundreds of anchovies flowing out off my mouth, past my eye with dozens of seabirds diving after them. In two weeks we will be there to film this phenomena. Or shall we say, this phenomenal behavior. Can’t wait. #goingaftertheshot #nature #naturelovers

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4 weeks ago

Next stop in our 2019 filming expeditions is Monterey Bay, California. My buddy Nathan Garofalos from @idoaerials is bringing in his million dollar GSS camera and I am confident we are going to capture something that earns your respect from this remarkable corner of the world. @jonmccormackphoto @cristinamittermeier , @bradleyphotographic and others are going to make up this exceptional team. Risso’s dolphins, humpbacks, birds, sea lions, blue whales and rich kelp forests make this one of the most beautiful locations on the Western seaboard. Why do Risso’s dolphins chew on one another to this extent? Let’s find out together. #nature #naturelovers #adventure #explore

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4 weeks ago

The images that I post on social media and the stories that I tell have been built on the backs of so many exceptional people. From guides, First Nations, Inuit guides, assistants (I don’t like that word ) and amazing friends like Dr. Patrick Freeny ( @pfreeny ) in this photograph. After @natgeo accepted my proposal to do a Spirit Bear story, I soon realized that we would never be able to come up with a budget big enough to hire a live-aboard boat for several months. The story was shelved for three years. Then I met Pat in Antarctica and he immediately offered his 50 foot sailboat to the project. He did much more than that. He cooked for the team and he was always there to pick us and our wet gear up at the end of a day of shooting in the little rubber boat. Always smiling and always a gentleman. He even used his medical skills and patched me up when I got hurt. Now that is what I call a friend and a teammate. It was a difficult story but we managed to get a nice cover feature in the yellow magazine. #gratitude #life #friends #explore

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5 weeks ago

After a week of sitting in the pouring rain, in the same spot, day after day, from dark to dark this was the first moment that I saw my first spirit bear. This picture is a bit blurry because I was just too excited. The light was also extremely low. My friend and editor @kengeiger was equally sad that @natgeo could not run the image but that does not lessen the moment or the memory. Another one of nature’s finest gifts. Sign up for my monthly newsletter to get behind-the-scenes stories from the field. Link in bio. #gratitude #bear #nature #naturelovers #kermodebear

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5 weeks ago

Did you know that there is a species of dolphin that does not have a dorsal fin? These elusive, playful and rarely seen dolphins exist in big numbers off the west coast of British Columbia. What species are they? Here is a hint…the word whale is part of their name. #nature #naturelovers #dolphin #love #beauty #explore

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last month

Orcas patrol the open blue sea off the West coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia. So often I put my camera down to enjoy such charismatic megafauna but when a pattern presents itself, my instinct is to capture the moment. Why do things usually look better in threes? #orca #nature #beauty #bw #blackandwhite

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Two humans for whom I have a ton of respect. Love you @ladzinski Thanks @prideofgypsies for the wishes and warrior cry. #respect #specialbirthdaywishes #gratitude

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Heading home to the land of wolves, bears and orcas. Can’t wait to explore BC. Encountering wolves like this gorgeous female sea wolf is the ultimate gift. #home

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Just finished two days of snorkeling with our #Omaze winner Stephanie @ward6585 and her partner Kevin @kyinthesky71 Couldn’t ask for nicer people. The whale sharks were everywhere doing what they do best and that is skimming the surface for fish eggs. More importantly, every year stricter rules are being put in place to protect these sharks from harassment and excessive boat traffic. I love seeing progress. We sincerely appreciate all of those who entered as those funds will go directly to our conservation campaigns and as you know there is much work to be done. For @sealegacy with @cristinamittermeier and @candace crespi

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last month

A mother humpback helps her young calf rest on the surface on the Silver Bank of the Dominican Republic in a display of nurturing that was humbling to witness. Before this moment, I never would have imagined that I would get a chance to lay motionless next to a mother humpback whale and her calf - and for them both to fully accept our presence. Here, these whales come to give birth in shallow warm, water before eventually turning back to feed on nutrient-rich water in the far North. The average humpback's migration covers a distance as long as 5000km; they travel to eat and breed, and mothers stay with their calves for about a year. Follow @SeaLegacy for more on ocean conservation. #TurningTheTide #gratitude

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last month

That moment when an orca descends underwater towards you and your boat; its sleek and powerful body curving like a bow, dorsal fin slicing through the midnight-dark waters in northern Norway. That is when you place your snorkel in your mouth, grab an underwater camera and slip over the edge of the zodiac. Your gut tells you that you might be foolish - that you might be taking your life in your hands when you decide to meet this great species face to face, but rationale is overrated when you put your trust and faith in the most intelligent top predator on this planet. And then you realize that you have taken your life in your hands, but not in the way you thought, because being in the water next to an orca changes something inside of you. With @cristinamittermeier @goranehlme and @hannestrager for @sealegacy

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