brianskerry brianskerry

323 posts   887,835 followers   369 followings

Brian Skerry  National Geographic Photographer // Speaker // Nikon Ambassador// Author

Photo by @BrianSkerry

Portrait of a sperm whale in the waters off Dominica in the Eastern Caribbean. These animals have complex cultures within their families that includes specialized dialects, parenting techniques and more. Sperm Whale family units are matrilineal and are led by older, wise female whales. The sperm whales found around Dominica however, are on a 3% annual decline due to anthropogenic stresses, such as entanglement in fishing gear and ship strikes. As Dr. Shane Gero has stated, if this population of animals were to disappear, we would loose a whale culture. Although other sperm whales would exist, but the cultures of this particular clan would be lost forever.

#whales #dominica #whaleculture #smartanimals

Photo by @BrianSkerry
Happy Earth Day! - A baby manatee clings to its mother’s back while she forages on seagrass, creating billowing clouds of mud around them.

On this day, we celebrate our stunningly beautiful planet - a water plant that glows like a jewel when viewed from the darkness of space. The more we learn about Earth, the more it becomes clear that it is a living tapestry in which everything is connected. Geology and biology blend together in a perfect machine where life flourishes everywhere.
But our home planet is suffering and is being degraded. It is an assault on every front. We live on a water planet, a place where 98% of our biosphere (where life can exist) is ocean, yet we are destroying Earth’s oceans daily. We have taken most of the fish, destroyed ecosystems, dump billions of pounds of plastic into her each year and turn her waters acidic from excessive carbon in the air.
I believe that every day should be Earth Day and that we must cherish the fragile web of life that exists here and protect it vigorously. We can no longer see ourselves apart from nature or above it, but rather directly tied to and dependent on it.
#EarthDay2019

Photo by @BrianSkerry

A newborn humpback whale calf swims just beneath the surface of the water off of Tonga in the South Pacific. Humpback migrate to these warm waters in winter from their summer feeding grounds in Antarctica. While in these warmer waters, females give birth following a nearly year-long gestation period. For the first year of its life, the calf will learn from its mother everything necessary to survive. Coverage from my multi-year project for National Geographic (@natgeo) focused on the cultures of whales.

#humpbackwhales #tonga #whaleculture #planetofthewhales #smartanimals

Photo by @BrianSkerry

A pair of orca swim near the surface in the chilly waters of the Norwegian arctic. The orcas migrate into fiords in this region during late fall and winter to feed on herring that often overwinter here. In late November the ‘Polar Night’ occurs, with weeks on end of darkness. Successful feeding by the orca involves complex communications and echolocation. Specialized feeding strategies such as this are examples of culture found among whale and dolphin families.

#orca #norway #whaleculture #smartanimals

Photo by @BrianSkerry
A sperm whale, with squid arms and tentacles in its mouth, feeds in the waters off Dominica in the Eastern Caribbean. These whales find squid here in depths of about 600-meters and surface only briefly between dives while in foraging mode. These animals have complex cultures within their families that includes specialized dialects, parenting techniques and more.

#whales #dominica #whaleculture #planetofthewhales #smartanimals

Photo by @BrianSkerry
A recently born humpback whale calf swims under the careful watch of it’s mom in the waters of the South Pacific. Humpback moms invest a lot into their offspring, with a gestation that lasts nearly a year and then spends the first year of the calf’s life teaching it all the skills it will need to survive in the sea. Theses bonds are strong and the learned behaviors are an important element of whale culture.
#whales #humpbackwhales #parenting #whaleculture

Photo by @BrianSkerry
An Orca swims into a massive bait ball of herring in the winter seas of the Norwegian arctic. Orca come here to feed on these fish in the fall and stay into the polar winter, when the sun no longer rises above the horizon and light levels are extremely low. The orca use communication and coordination to gather the fish into ‘bait balls’ then swim through stunning the herring with their tails before eating them. Creating unique feeding strategies demonstrates a high degree of cognition and is a key element of whale and dolphin culture.

#orca #whales #norway #arctic #planetofthewhales

Photo by @BrianSkerry
Happy St. Patrick’s Day! A wild bottlenose dolphin plays with diver Nigel Motyer off the west coast of Ireland. In several locations around the world, dolphins have established residency and frequently interact with humans.
Photographed #onassignment for @natgeo
dolphins #ireland #nikonnofilter #nikonambassador #nature #love #stpatricksday

Photo by @BrianSkerry
A Humpback whale calf peeks at me around it's mom’s nose in the waters of the South Pacific. Humpback moms invest a lot into their offspring, with a gestation that lasts nearly a year and then spend the first year of the calf’s life teaching it all the skills it will need to survive in the sea. The calves are not born with innate knowledge of all the things they must know and must learn these from their mother. Theses bonds are strong and are an important element of whale culture.
Coverage from my upcoming project with @natgeo

#whales #humpbackwhales #parenting #planetofthewhales #whaleculture @nikonusa

Photo by @BrianSkerry
The United Nations team used one of my Mako Shark photographs, along with a portrait of me to create this unique image - I am a mako shark! I have partnered with the Wild for Life and Clean Seas campaigns, run by the United Nations Environment Program, to help spread the word about the threats our oceans and the animals within them face, and how you can help me address them:
I’m sure you’ve been confronted with many of the issues threatening our oceans today - melting ice caps and rising sea levels, major oil spills and overfishing threatening marine animals. You probably seen pictures of sea turtles choking on plastic or maybe you’ve heard about coral reefs dying globally due to the effects of climate change. All these problems and many more are pushing our oceans’ ecosystems to the brink of collapse.
Without healthy oceans, humans cannot survive. Over half the oxygen we breathe comes from the oceans. They regulate the climate and make our planet inhabitable for humans and are key in our fight against climate change. Oceans are also home to around two billion species and around three billion people are dependent on the oceans for food.
I am therefore calling on you to help me and UN Environment in our efforts to protect them.
There are many things you can do to help save our seas and marine life:
… you can say no to single-use plastics and step up your recycling
… you can be an advocate for marine protected areas
… you can vote for a government that supports climate action and conservation and so much more!
And you can spread the word! Go to the Wild for Life website to find your kindred marine species (link here - http://bit.ly/2Eh8b5g). The website also has lots of facts to learn more about our planet’s breath-taking marine biodiversity. My kindred species is a Mako shark!
#LifeBelowWater #WildForLife #WorldWildlifeDay! #CleanSeas

Photo by @BrianSkerry
An Orca calf swims with two adults through chilly seas filled with fish scales in the waters of the Norwegian arctic. Orca come here to feed on a type of fish called herring. The orca use communication and coordination to gather the fish into ‘bait balls’ then swim through stunning the herring with their tails before eating them. Creating unique feeding strategies demonstrates highly cognitive behavior and is an element of whale and dolphin culture. I first worked with orca in Norway in 1994, and back then I was shooting film. Still challenging conditions with very low light, but using digital @nikonusa cameras made things infinitely better!

#orca #whales #smartanimals #killerwhales #norway #arctic #planetofthewhales

Photo by @BrianSkerry
A sperm whale calf, about 6 months old, plays in sargassum weed in the waters of the eastern Caribbean Sea. With the largest brain of all animals on Earth, they are also our planet’s largest predator. Portrayed as monsters for centuries, researchers today are learning that these animals and their societies are far more complex than ever believed. Sperm whale families share unique dialects, parenting techniques and other elements of culture.
They have roamed the seas since before humans walked upright and likely possess knowledge about the ocean dating back eons.
#spermwhales #whaleculture #predators #caribbean #whales

Most Popular Instagram Hashtags