Mountain Caribou Initiative
A Visual Journey into the Imperiled World of an Endangered Species
In the summer of 2015 I launched a new photography and conservation project, revolving around the crumbling world of mountain caribou in western Canada and the northwestern continental United States. As their habitat has been steadily altered or destroyed by a myriad of human activities, mountain caribou have been declining rapidly. Unsure of whether this project would be documentation of the end of a distinct ecotype of this iconic species or possibly a step along the path to inspiring the change in human behavior that will need to happen to save these animals, I set out to learn about and capture images of these reclusive animals across the Selkirk, Columbia and Rocky mountains in British Columbia and Alberta.
A Problem with No Easy Answers
What I have discovered so far is a compelling and complicated story which is being played out in a strikingly beautiful and, in places, deeply scarred landscape. It is a story that defies easy answers for the problems we have created and one that illuminates the complicated web of ecological relationships which humans have altered in ways not easily undone—forcing us as a species to chart a new way forward as we strive to meet our own needs while attempting to preserve the biological diversity and integrity of the landscape around us.
My initial field trip to the region yielded some great results. I am currently seeking funding to continue the project with several follow up trips back to caribou country to capture the complicated seasonal shifts in caribou behavior over the course of a year and to explore the varying conservation challenges they face as they migrate up and down the mountains they call home which puts them in contact with everything from industrial logging operations to high elevation helicopter access backcountry ski businesses.
Follow the Journey
Click here for a collection of blogposts from my field work in mountain caribou country and follow up stories about these animals and their home.
View images from myself and other project collaborators on Instagram–#mountaincaribouinitiative.
Find us on Facebook at https: facebook.com/mountaincaribouinitiative
Support the Effort
Interested in helping get the products from this project out to a larger audience? Contact me with ideas and opportunities for publications and slideshows.