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Most Inspirational Environmental Stories of the Year
By Joseph Tepper, April 22, 2016 @ 08:00 PM (EST)

It’s Earth Day—an annual occasion to celebrate the planet’s natural treasures and reinforce the necessity to protect them. With nearly 70 percent of the Earth’s surface covered with oceans, we prefer to focus on the water, rather than the earth (don’t worry, June’s World Oceans Day is going to be bigger than ever).

In the meantime, we are using Earth Day to take a look back at our most inspirational environmental and conservation stories in the last calendar year. From shark ecotourism to deep-sea marine research robots, we celebrate the Earth (and oceans) every day at DPG. Here are 10 stories to keep you inspired.

Shark Ecotourism in Guadalupe

By Joseph Tepper

When it comes to shark conservation, arguably the best tool is ecotourism. Mexico's Isla Guadalupe Isla is a prime example of this, as Joseph Tepper reports. Here, swimming with the most prized shark—the great white—isn’t reserved for the seasoned traveler and photographer. Increasingly, non-diving adventure tourists are getting in the water, and bringing home pictures and stories to dispel negative myths about sharks. Read the full story


A Guide to Conservation Research Photography

By Christine Shepard

Sometimes, an underwater photographer can be a conservation researcher’s best friend. Accomplished environmental photographer Christine Shepard shares her experience and advice for hooking an awesome job working alongside the top marine scientists in the country. Read the full story


Galapagos Creates Massive Marine Park

By Joseph Tepper

The Galapagos Islands are probably the ultimate destination for underwater photographers, with schooling hammerheads, massive whale sharks, flippery penguins, and tons of epidemic species. Well, the future of this unique marine environment was further secured with the big news that the Ecuadorian government would be erecting a massive marine protected area around the islands of Wolf and Darwin. Read the full story


Whale Photography for Conservation and Research

By Wayne Osborn

Photographer Wayne Osborn might just have the most impressive whale photography portfolio you’ve ever seen. Humpback, sperm, minke—he's got them all. But Wayne's images are serving a greater purpose than just looking amazing on the wall or right here on DPG. Wayne breaks down how to turn your images into highly lauded resources for scientists. Here’s one tip, from the words of Wayne: “One irony is that often the most (photographically) boring images have more scientific value than the spectacular ones.” Read the full story


Photo Series: Shark Teeth Sculptures

By Hedley Wiggan

Blink and you might miss it. Sometimes the smallest things make the biggest difference in conservation efforts. And it doesn’t get much smaller than Hedley Wiggan’s micro-sculptures of marine creatures carved from shedded shark teeth. Working with London's Sea Life Aquarium, Hedley creates microscopic-sized carvings from teeth that have fallen to the bottom of the tank—including a stingray, turtle and a sea horse. The goal is to use the novelty of the carvings to attract attention to the conservation plight of so many of these animals. Read the full story


Robots in Marine Conservation Research

By Logan Mock-Bunting

We talk a lot about the amazing people working to conserve the marine environment: But what about the amazing robots? In this article, photojournalist Logan Mock-Bunting shares the incredible story of breakthrough robotic technology that makes it possible to document and record vast amounts of remote coral reef never before possible. Read the full story



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