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VIFF: It’s the Earth, not the Moon

Corvo is the smallest island in the Azores.  Its wildlife is more along the lines of pigs and cows, unlike the  grizzlies, wolves, humpback whales, and salmon that make their home in the Great Bear.

After watching this film, I wanted to visit Corvo. A month ago I was lucky to visit the  Great Bear Rainforest.  Home of the Spirit Bear. Cover feature on National Geographic magazine.  A wild place up the north coast of BC.  There,  the estuaries were pristine, the rivers and sea full of fish, and even choked at spawning time,  wolves swam,  bears fished and fed on the quaintly named Lyngby sedge, eagles soared, and trees dwarfed the landscape.  Our trip with   Bluewater  Adventures happened in mid-September.  Guided by  an able crew of sailors, naturalists, cooks, and logrollers we set off from Bella Bella and a few short hours later I was out in a kayak in Salmon Bay, deeply immersed in the wilderness.

I was pleased to share the trip with our new Freshwater Ambassador, Scott Niedermayer, the hockey legend and captain of Canada’s gold-medal team at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.  See his blog from the trip. Scott was quickly immersed in his new role, as this photo shows, taken beside just one of the many spectacular waterfalls we saw on our trip. BC’s freshwater was in full evidence on our trip, as we were drenched daily by rain storms and squalls, and our boots were filled by soakers  as we tramped around the mudflats of Mussel Inlet,  Khutze Inlet and many more estuaries.

Linda Nowlan and Scott Niedermayer (c)WWF-Canada

Here in the WWF-Canada office  we are working on conservation issues central to the region: integrated ecosystem-based marine planning  – PNCIMA ( Pacific Coast Integrated Management Area)- assessing ocean noise off BC’s Pacific Coast, figuring out ways to account for cumulative environmental impacts of multiple human activities, sustainable shipping, Green Marine for ports and shipping companies, protection of endangered species like orcas and sensitive habitats like eelgrass, and laws and policies to protect the environmental flows of the wild and working rivers.

Like Corvo, the most isolated point in Europe,  the Great Bear Sea and islands are hard to get to.  But once there, it’s hard to leave , and a part of the place will stay with you forever. Films  like It’s the Earth, not the Moon are the next best thing to being there.