Vote for Hawaiian Monk Seals!

I submitted this photo to the annual Nature Conservancy photo contest. Last year, they received over 17,000 entries. This year, I made their Top 100 list, and I’d love for you to vote for this photo as your favorite.

My Year of Tracking Twain

For four months now, I’ve been tracking Mark Twain’s movements around Hawai‘i. Tomorrow marks the 150th anniversary of his departure from these Islands. During Twain’s time in Hawai‘i, I made visits to the same islands as he during the same weeks he visited. Just 150 years later. I went to O`ahu, Maui, and Hawai`i Island….

How Extreme Birds Inspire Us to be Better Humans

Memorial Day. Graduation. Father’s Day. The solstice. For most people, one of these marks the beginning of summer. For me, these calendar events signal the coming completion of albatross season. Albatross? You mean those big white birds with wingspans longer than I am tall who glide over the surface of the sea as gentle as…

Endangered Species Have the Coolest Tongues

Albatross have pointy tongues. Humpback whales have tongues that are the size of Volkswagen bugs. The tips of Hawaiian monk seals’ tongues are bifurcated, a fancy word for split. Pretty cool, huh. And that’s just tongues. Wait until we get to the throats. Today is recognized as Endangered Species Day. The goal of the day…

One Albatross to Another: “Same time next year.”

Laysan albatrosses don’t roam the wide seas of the Pacific Ocean in flocks. They don’t even forage for flying fish and squid with their mates. What it comes down to is Laysan albatrosses travel through their watery world solo. That’s why they’re known as synchronous nesters. I counted 28 Laysan albatrosses on my survey this…

How Cool Is That: Laysan Albatrosses Return.

A Laysan albatross living on the remains of an island 1,200 miles northwest of Honolulu is the oldest-known bird living in the wild. Her name is Wisdom, and she is 63 years old. Wisdom was first banded in 1956 as an adult when she was estimated to be five years old. But she could just…