For two weeks, I and a fellow teacher led a group of 10 students to Guyana with Operation Wallacea's biodiversity expedition to the country. That link says a lot about the structure of the expedition, but what I wanted to mention here was the book which I have recently been composing on the wildlife of the Guiana shield rainforests and on our expedition to them. The book is a collaboration, in a very big sense: it contains not only my photographs, but images from other members of the expedition too, as well as those from a second expedition led from the school a week later. A lot of these individual photographs can be seen on the 'KES Wildlife' website at tinyurl.com/keswildlife.
An online version of the book itself is available to browse on the Blurb website. I hope you will take a look at the book and enjoy some of the amazing sights which it displays! I copy below my opening text to the book, which says everything I could wish to say about the photographs as a record of the expedition:
The rainforests of the 'Guiana Shield' are among the most pristine ecosystems on Earth, and their biodiversity is overwhelming. In the summer of 2012, we had the privilege of living in, documenting and helping conserve this remote jungle and its wildlife as part of Operation Wallacea's Guyana expedition.
Our purpose was research: walking transects through the forest in search of mammals; setting mist-nets to assess bird and bat species; setting pit-fall and light traps to explore the invertebrate life; and conducting torch-lit searches for the amphibian and reptile 'herpetofauna'. What we found, and what we learned, was simply breathtaking.
The photographs in this volume span space and species: from the research base at Iwokrama River Lodge to the remote beauty of Kaieteur Falls; from the invertebrates of the deepest jungle to the iconic anaconda alongside the Burro-Burro river; and from our own survey work in camp and in the field to the warm hospitality of our Amerindian guides from the eco-village of Surama.
These pictures are the least we can do to express our gratitude. To Jaguar for their funding, to OpWall's scientists with their expertise, and for the sheer lengths to which our hosts in Guyana went on our behalf - to all, our heartfelt thanks! It is our fondest hope that these photographs bring as much joy to those who see them as they did to those who took them, and that they convey firmly the idea that not only does biodiversity matter, but it is a great joy to be able to experience it, especially in so beautiful a place.