This website will be where I post pictures of encounters with animals, and other bits and pieces of information I think you might enjoy or find interesting. Older pictures are in the Past Picture file.
That's my hand on the face of a baby gray whale. I'm in a sixteen foot-long panga (boat) in San Ignacio Lagoon, Baja, Mexico. For hundreds, if not thousands of years, gray whales have migrated 12,000 miles round-trip between Alaska and Baja. They winter in the warm waters of Mexico, have their calves, and then return to Alaska in the summer to feed. These lagoons were discovered by whalers in the early 1800s, and they proceeded to slaughter the whales until they were on the brink of extinction. I think the reason I feel an affinity for this encounter above all others is because it represents a level of forgiveness for being human. Not by this baby whale, who can know nothing of our history, or that we nearly wiped them as a species from the face of the earth. It can't know that we still imprison their cousins--dolphins and Orcas for our entertainment. Yet this baby whale's 47-foot-long mother brought him, or her, to the side of our small boat, where this touch sent a shock wave to my very soul. The essence of whale is forever entwined with the essence of what it is for me to be human, and to hold the fate of these animals, and the planet, in my hand and your hand.
I write about our relationship with animals, and the natural world, to compensate for being human. I write for young people because each generation hands off to the next the responsibility for preserving what is left over from our destructive nature. This generation is now the one that must remain vigilant. Just a few years ago Mitsubishi, the Japanese car maker, lobbied the Mexican government to allow them to build a salt factory on the shores of San Ignacio Lagoon. It would have spelled disaster for the gray whale, and to the credit of the Mexican government, the permit was denied. It was denied because thousands of people, who had experienced a moment like this one, campaigned and wrote letters pleading with the Mexican government to protect this lagoon and these whales.