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Photos by Carlton Ward Jr. @carltonward | My friends and fellow National Geographic explorers Peter Houlihan and Mac Stone have published a new paper in Scientific Reports that details their discoveries behind ghost orchid pollination during the summer of 2018 at Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary. In the first photo, Peter sets a light trap using a black light to attract moths 90 feet up in an old-growth cypress tree. Then Peter and Mac search for orchids in the canopy. In the last image, at 50 feet up in a nearby cypress, they adjust Mac’s camera trap, which provided the visual evidence for Houlihan’s hypothesis that multiple species pollinate the ghost orchid—a subject he had been investigating for National Geographic Society and other partners for more than five years. For a film about their discoveries—and mine—from camera traps at Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge, see the Chasing Ghosts link in my bio, where you can also follow a link to the National Geographic story by Douglas Main. #HoulihanHypothesis #ChasingGhosts #PathofthePanther #swamp @macstonephoto @peter_houlihan @audubon_fl @insidenatgeo #KeepFLWild
Photo by Thomas Peschak @thomaspeschak | Dassen Island, off South Africa’s west coast, was one of the few places in the world where penguins and rabbits interacted on a daily basis. Both species nested and bred in burrows dug into the sandy island soil. I made this photograph in the early 2000s, and this scene no longer exists today. African penguin numbers declined dramatically, due to a lack of their preferred fish prey, caused by overfishing and changes in oceanography. For more photographs of rabbit and penguin antics follow @thomaspeschak.
Photo by Cory Richards @coryrichards | Tsiring Wangmo starts her day with the morning milking in Tsarang, Nepal. Her family is one of the few in this remote village who depend upon herding livestock for a living. #Onassignment in Mustang, we are examining how traditional ways of living are adjusting to the intrusion of modernity. Roads, connectivity, migration, climate change, and tourism all place new pressures upon ancient cultures while also offering new opportunities. In one generation, life here may be unrecognizable to Tsiring and her peers. Text by Ben Ayers @jetbutterflies. #followme @coryrichards @jetbutterflies and our expedition team Kyle Daly, Above The Clouds, and Abiral Rai for more real-time images from #nepal
Photo by William Daniels @williamodaniels | Seeking out the unvaccinated in Karachi, Pakistan, a health worker finds a boy who lacks the mark on his finger that would indicate he’s previously been inoculated against polio. The oral vaccine has to be dispensed quickly, before the train on which he's riding pulls out. Follow me on @williamodaniels for more human stories around the world.
Photo by George Steinmetz @geosteinmetz | Harvesting wind and wheat on a farm near Hitchand, Texas. Wind power is now cheaper than fossil fuels in the U.S., but entrenched political interests are stopping construction of a power grid to get it to market. To see more of our world from above, follow @geosteinmetz. #windpower #renewableenergy #climatechangethefacts
It. Is. Time. From Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs to The Mandalorian, check out basically everything coming to #DisneyPlus in the U.S. on November 12. Pre-order in the U.S. at http://DisneyPlus.com today
Video by Bertie Gregory @bertiegregory | A large male polar bear yawns during a snooze on the west coast of the Hudson Bay, in Manitoba, Canada. Aside from his blueish purple tongue, his mouth contains another interesting feature: the position of his teeth. Behind a polar bear's huge canines, there’s a gap where the teeth don’t erupt out the gum. This gap allows the canines to sink deeper into their seal prey, offering a greater grip to catch and pull seals of the water. Follow @bertiegregory for more wildlife adventures #wild_life #wildlife #animals #ice #snow #bear #teeth #polar bear
Photo by Ira Block @irablockphoto | A quiet moment for a Moroccan cameleer in the sands of the Sahara, near the village of Merzouga. The Sahara is the largest hot desert in the world, and Merzouga is the gateway to Erg Chebbi, a great expense of sand dunes. #follow me @irablockphoto for more photos from our planet. #desert #sand #saharadesert #camels #irablock
Photo by Jasper Doest @jasperdoest | My cousin Odette takes Flamingo Bob out for a swim or a stroll on the beach almost every week. She loves seeing Bob in his natural environment, but realizes that he would never be able to survive out there. She rescued him almost three years ago after he flew against a hotel window on Curaçao, and during the rehabilitation process she found that he suffered from a chronic foot condition and couldn't go back to the wild. However, the idea that the bird is playing an important role in flamingo conservation in the Caribbean comforts her, and in the meantime they enjoy their weekly time off. Follow @jasperdoest for more images of Flamingo Bob. #flamingo #prettyinpink #flamingobob #curacao
Photo by Diana Markosian @markosian | A group of dancers in Grozny, Chechnya, wait to perform in the central square. After nearly two decades of war and 70 years of Soviet rule during which religious participation was banned, modern-day Chechnya is going through an Islamic revival. I traveled to Chechnya over the course of two years and watched as the republic transformed, with Chechen authorities building mosques in every village, prayer rooms in public schools, and enforcing a stricter Islamic dress code for both men and women. #chechnya
Photo by Stephen Alvarez @salvarezphoto | Putnam County, Georgia. Rock Eagle is one of the few Native American effigy mounds in the United States east of the Ohio River. The scale of this artwork is immense. The bird image is made from quartzite rocks, hauled to the site. It is 120 feet wingtip to wingtip—about the size of a 737 jet airliner. Shockingly little is known about the artwork itself. Few cultural remains were found during archaeological digs, but it's estimated that the mound is at least 2,000 years old. This image is part of a project for my nonprofit @ancientartarchive that preserves and shares humanity's oldest stories. #rockeagle #effigymound