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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED for the Whales! by Robert Glenn Ketchum

by Robert Glenn Ketchum

World-Renowned Conservation Photographer Robert Glenn Ketchum dedicates Tuesday's to the Natural Resources Defense Council's (@NRDC) successful campaign that kept a whale birthing lagoon from industrial development.  Laguna San Ignacio Gray Whale Nursery in Baja California, Mexico is best known as the winter home to the once-endangered gray whale. The lagoon lies within one of the largest ecological preserves in Latin America, designated a Biosphere Reserve / World Heritage Site by the Mexican government in 1988. This blog is part of that story.  Enjoy!


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #90:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #90: The bottom line is that A LOT OF PEOPLE showed their human concern for the protection of some amazing fellow travelers on this #planet and now the gray #whales of #SanIgnacioLagoon can continue their long history of using this safe haven as their birthing area and nursery! Thank you #JoelReynolds and #NRDC for inviting me to take part in this. Thank you to Bobbie Kennedy and his family, the Aridjis, Glenn Close and her daughter, and Pierce Brosnan and his son for allowing themselves to be figureheads to this #campaign and for allowing all of us the thousands of pictures, interviews, and words that it took. This was a privilege for me, as well as an education.  AND a chance to physically interact with one of the largest minds and creatures on this planet. This is the last post of this story, so I hope you have enjoyed what I have tried to relate and that you will take the opportunity to visit San Ignacio, touch a whale, drink some tequila and cerveza and watch the sun rise and set in shimmering radiance of the tidal fluctuations.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, September 9, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #89:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #89: The response to the #NRDC ad campaign that named all of the common popular products under #Mitsubishi's roof and suggested readers protest development in #SanIgnacioLagoon by NOT BUYING those goods was shockingly swift. After years of critical #media and continuing public protests, these targeted ads were the last straw.  Mitsubishi announced their withdrawal of the proposal to build an industrial salt complex in San Ignacio!  Just as quickly, NRDC and the other groups it had partnered with, petitioned the Mexican government to include San Igancio within the domain of the #UNESCO #WorldHeritage Site, #ElVizcaino Biosphere Reserve, which was also accomplished. My description of these events barely does justice to all that NRDC and their friends accomplished. My blog brings you pictures with SOME description, but I was only a small part of a much larger effort, so what I told you is an equally small part of this great TALE (LOL, I am making a "whale" joke.)
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, September 2, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #88:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #88: The first of the full-page newspaper ads that #NRDC ran explained the unique aspects of #SanIgnacioLagoon being a gray whale birthing area and nursery, and why the impact of an industrial salt extraction complex by #Mitsubishi might imperil the #habitat. The already developed Mitsubishi #saltworks to the north of San Ignacio was used as the example of what goes wrong. The ads created considerable media buzz, however the process of preventing this development was considerable, so similar ads ran several more times. It was then NRDC's lead attorney, Joel Reynolds, did something that completely changed the game - We all know the name Mitsubishi, but what brands do they make/own ? These full-page newspaper ads were expensive and Joel wanted a bigger bang for the buck. Mitsubishi seemed more "nebulous" to the public than specific brand names; so Joel decided the next newspaper ad WOULD LIST ALL THE BRANDS MITSUBISHI OWNED AND ASK THE PUBLIC NOT TO BUY THEM! As you can see, the whales were pretty happy about that.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #87:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #87: Over the decade that this #media #campaign ran, the players that assembled for the first visit went about their missions: The #Aridjis' rallied Spanish language readers; #RichardSobol (from the #LATimes) and I saw that our pictures were published in as many places as we could get them.  And the local groups, #ProEsteros and #ProNatura coordinated with #NRDC to broaden community involvement and expand their economy. For the first 5-years or so, #Mexico seemed willing to go ahead with allowing #Mitsubishi to develop the proposed salt complex. Then traction from the #campaign began to kick-in. Perhaps the most ingenious step was taken by #JoelReynolds, senior attorney in NRDC's west coast office and one of the originators of the #SanIgnacioLagoon campaign - NRDC would pay to run full-page ads in major national newspapers telling the story and asking the public to protest the industrial development and protect the #whale birthing area.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #86:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #86: As a marvelous writer and poet, Homero Aridjis (#HomeroAridjis) not only helped attracted Latin American media, but he actually incorporated the #whales into his work. In many cases what he was discussing was the science and marvel of the lagoon, educating an entire society that hardly knew it was there, and to whom whales were strange creatures. As did the words of American author, #DickRussell, Homero's writings about the whales created a whole new interest in them and culture around them. On this day, what is now becoming a more common occurrence, buses of school children have come to float amongst the mothers and calves, and if they are lucky, they will make some amazing new friends. Homero happened to be in camp as well, and before the students depart on their adventure, he is reading one of his most well known poems to them.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, August 12, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #85:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #85: This was to be a #campaign of many years before #Mitsubishi would finally withdraw their plans, so it was #NRDC's intention to keep #media influence as constant as possible. An important component of that from the beginning, were Betty and Homero #Aridjis (middle), shown here with their children. Homero is part of the #GrupoDeLosCien, a friendship of 100 of the most important Latin-American #writers and #poets, and he worked with them to see southern American cultures were as interested in this as we in North America were. Baja is Mexico. This is an important wild place on the Mexican coastline. Homero's leadership, presence, and eloquent words brought his friends in, and kept everyone interested.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #84:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #84: It was great to see the modest visitor/science center well used and to hear whatever news the researchers had learned.  For my visits, the most memorable presentations were back in the #whale camp facilities. These were smaller, more intimate places that everyone ate/drank in, and in the evenings various guests would present; something I have done several times. On this evening a friend, Dick Russell, author of "Striper Wars: An American Fish Story" is reading to all of us from another of his books - an amazing book - "Eye of the Whale". The closeness and camaraderie of these beautiful little whale camps is heightened as a human moment because we have all spent the day interacting with a remarkable part of the natural world in a way that seems unimaginable. We have been touching/scratching/petting #whales!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #83:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #83: As the #media stories reached more and more people, the #whales of #SanIgnacioLagoon attracted researchers from several universities, who, along with their students, would come down and study the #habitat to build a #biological database. Along with that research, a really nice yet simple "visitor's center" was built so that programs and conferences could be hosted as part of the public outreach and ongoing educational programs. Some of the speakers and scientists at these presentations have been remarkable and their research on the whales has been extremely important in keeping the #lagoon from being "too developed."
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #82:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #82: Over the next decade, #NRDC and its "friends" would build a remarkable #campaign against the idea of permitting #Mitsubishi from building an industrial salt complex in #SanIgnacioLagoon. NRDC would also begin a unique role helping to develop new, more renewable, and sustainable economic resources for those that lived in and around the lagoon. One of those engines of this new economy was the seasonal visit of the #whales, and so several more-permanent camps replaced the temporary tent camps that we first inhabited. I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to return during this time to witness the change. These small cabins are FAR more comfortable on cold, blustery nights than a tent, and NOTHING has changed the beauty of the bay. The chair and cold beer still await...
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #81:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #81: My last view of the edge of #SanIgnacioLagoon, before our plane turned north to follow the #coastline, tied together the many things I had personally discovered on my walk-abouts. Below me was a back-bay and a maze of #mangrove channels which occur at many points around the shoreline of the lagoon. These particular mangroves are close to the edge of the #Pacific but are protected from swells and storm surge by a huge barrier island sand beach. Just below the cloud line in the upper-left of this image you can also see a significant channel from the Pacific into the lagoon. I wonder if I can get to this beach by skiff?  Looks like a great beach with a swell running, this could be boogie-board heaven!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #80:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #80: As the plane arched west toward the #Pacific, we crossed over a central part of #SanIgnacioLagoon encountering the shore opposite the point on which we had our tent camp. From camp the #lagoon was wide enough to make this a distant view on the #horizon. Now looking down, I was struck by the substantial uplift at the #shoreline and the VERY large areas of the mainland (visible at several places in this image) that were inundated by the high #tide and now appearing "wet" but waterless. Did I mention that the road to the airport was impassable at high tide, so even our flight was scheduled around a tide chart?
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, July 1, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #79:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #79: The next morning began early as the initial media-phase of the #NRDC #campaign began to wind down on the shores of #SanIgnacioLagoon. Buses and vans of every size and shape carried away pods of journalists from numerous countries, the tent camps were rather quickly being disassembled, and the stars and families that had been guests of NRDC were shuttled to the dirt landing strip to await the plane. As we took off and I looked down on the bay, I realized that my walk-abouts in the various climes of this #desert caused me to have a considerably different perspective and understanding of this unique place than I did when I flew in. In the foreground of this image are a few VERY dry #islands, but another low tide has made this arm of the bay quite shallow and uncovered a sand/mud flat visible near the top of the picture, much like the exposed #tideland I had been walking upon the previous day.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, June 24, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #78:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #78: If you have followed this #blog, you know that this is the story of the BEGINNING of an #NRDC campaign to protect the gray #whale birthing area in #Baja, CA, known as #SanIgnacioLagoon. For the better part of a week in 1997, stars, scientists, international NGO's, and innumerable media gathered together in a group of tent camps on a windswept bluff overlooking the #lagoon to learn more about the #ecology and #biology of the area and to strategize - not only about how to prevent #Mitsubishi from developing an #industrial #salt complex in these #waters, BUT also how to support the local #economy in a more prosperous way without turning to some form of intensive development. Here the "architects" of these ideas and this campaign enjoy a beautiful sunset together on our last night: from left to right (the men) the illustrious members of the Natural Resources Defense Council, Joel Reynolds, Robert Kennedy, Jr., and Jacob Scherr - will their efforts be rewarded?
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #77:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #77: In the shade and comfort of camp I reconstituted myself and cleaned my #camera gear from saline spray and sand. Boats went out to visit with #whales, presentations for the media continued under various tents, and the day wore on. Late that afternoon, as the boats were returning, the "breeze" off of the #Pacific picked up considerably, and it got amazingly cold VERY quickly. In this picture the camp manager (in white) is having a conversation with (left to right) Bobby Kennedy, Jr., John Adams (founder of NRDC), and Glenn Close. Inside a relatively warm tent full of people (a lot of people!) eating and drinking, EVERYONE is wearing serious layered clothing - Glenn has on fleece! Hard to imagine I was getting dangerously baked just 6-7 hours ago, and now it was hypothermic cold outside. Welcome to the edge of #wildness, welcome to Laguna San Ignacio and the #Viscaino desert!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, June 10, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #76:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #76: One last gauntlet of prickly, stubbly, ankle-biting scrub and I would be home to some tent shade and a cold beer, but at the moment I was thinking more about not falling down. Walking through this was like navigating #tundra "tufts" in #Alaska, it was easy to turn an ankle. Fall down in Alaska and you might end up wet; fall here and you might end up needing surgery to remove #Cholla spines! The good news, however, is that I can finally feel a faint #sea breeze. If you look carefully at some of the green/yellow vegetation, you can see blurred motion. Normally blurred motion in a detailed landscape is NOT my friend, but today I didn't care, this blurred motion meant I was finally cooling off!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #75:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #75: The day was only getting hotter as it was not yet Noon and my #lagoon / #desert walk had turned into more of a plod; a sweaty plod! The heat radiating up from the #sand floor was nearly as hot as the direct sun and even though I had turned back towards camp, I was yet to reach the #sea breeze. As I edged closer to the lagoon and neared the first of the green vegetation, I once again entered that marginal zone between where things are trying to live and where they can't. Approaching a wall of stubbly, knee-high bushes, I encountered tendrils of creeping vines snaking out into the blazing desert, probing the hot sand and trying to establish new roots. If they succeed, their new growth will create some shade, allowing other plants to advance and establish themselves as well. These are some seriously hardy and adaptive life forms!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #74:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #74: Out there, across the plain of the baking hot #desert, life looked really dry, and very prickly - a marginal existence to say the least. I was toasted! Having WAY to much sun/fun already, I needed to move back towards the cooler breezes from the #Pacific and some shade. If you will look at the horizon on the right side of this image, you will see green - that would be the first wave of vegetation that was close enough to the #lagoon and moisture that it hadn't been fried, so that was my goal. There is a joke among my friends and I when working in Alaska - at the start of a trip into an unknown place, we often say to each other, "Well, lets go find out how big this place really is." Clearly this is NOT Alaska, but the statement had applicable resonance here. It would be awhile before I got any cooler.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #73:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #73: I walked a good distance on the extended #tidal flats, but in a direction AWAY from the #Pacific and the cooling breezes. Even next to the #water it was HOT! In this image I stand on the edge of transition between tidal bay at slack water and the blazing #Vizcaino #desert in the distance. The vegetation is dry, barely surviving, and partially saline-tolerant. The dark stripe above the vegetation is another massive section of the bay exposed by low tide. In the upper right-corner you can see the mountain ranges within #ElVizcainoBiosphereReserve, BUT to the left of the image, in the shimmer of heat coming up, off the sandscape, a mirage of dunes and bay water ...floating above the open desert has appeared. Enlarge this on your screen and you will see the mirage is "incomplete" and breaks up in places, eventually just dissipating into thin air before "connecting" with the range.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #72:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #72: The extent of bay-floor exposure at the extreme #lowtide was quite amazing. Not only were countless #shellfish revealed but creatures that inhabited pool-like areas were cut-off and trapped once the #tide went out. They still had pools in which to survive and await the returning tide, but being trapped made them easier prey. In the case of this #octopus, a predator would have to see it before they could feast on it, and with the octopus' remarkable capacity to camouflage, that was actually pretty hard to do. Watching one of these completely change color/colors before your eyes and virtually disappear is VERY trippy.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, May 6, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #71:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #71:  The #shells strewn about after the extreme #low-tide #bird buffet were primarily #clams and #scallops. It was good to see the scallop populations returning after they were #over-harvested in previous decades. The clams were everywhere, and quite large as you can see. The #birds were not alone in the harvest, however, the local cooks back at the our camp had also taken advantage of the low tide and we found the same clams and scallops in our meals. Once again I pondered the discarded shells in the mud, and thought back to the "process" I had "witnessed" on my previous hike - those shells would solidify in the silt/sand, compress into near-rock over centuries of time, then be uplifted and appear as part of the new shoreline - YEOW!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #70:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #70: Fortified by some breakfast, I parted company with those going out in the pangas to play with the #whales, and I turned my attention to the #tidal flats in the #bay that had been revealed by an extremely low tide. It was a fairly vast expanse and offered a whole new view of #SanIgnacioLagoon. Although some of the #mudflats could be boot-sucking, a little judgement got you around a considerable area that was formerly well underwater. The birds were the first to take advantage of this extreme tidal flux, and the carnage of their dinner/breakfast littered many areas. The clams, still alive and augured into their mud-dens, would spit at me as I walked by!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #69:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #69: Dawn the next day found me in that same sling-chair, now pondering the dream-like colored sky reflections on the wet sand during an extremely low tide. It occurred to me that I should have some breakfast and talk a walk on this amazing exposed tidal plain. The #whales can usually be visited twice a day, and since much of the day before I was out on the open water with them (and 1/2 the media in South America), I now looked forward to some quiet time to #photograph other things and further ponder the totality of the lagoon.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #68:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #68: After a couple of more beers (and maybe some tequila), the "slow movie" was still playing and my sling chair had conformed PERFECTLY to my body, so I decided, why struggle with gravity issues, sit here, keep quiet, and watch the show. It was definitely an academy award performance. A light windbreaker and the alcohol protected me from the cool breeze that rose off the #ocean and soon the moon came up, warming me further... WHAT?
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, April 8, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #67:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #67: When you have a great encounter with the natural world, it is often exhausting and there is a wonderful space in the afterglow of the experience where you are finally SO QUIET within yourself that you can begin to notice "other things" about your circumstances that you may have overlooked previously. Sitting in a sling-chair in the shade, cold beer in hand, I watched the tide go out. Instead of being a "slow movie"... it was an awakening! As the ocean retreated, the shallow bottom of the bay rose and plethora of life forms suddenly appeared - shellfish, crab, worms, and hundreds of birds - more of the amazing diversity supported in this web of life - #SanIgnacioLagoon.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #66:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #66: It proved to be quite a morning. EVERYBODY got into the act ! Here Jean-Michel Cousteau (@JMCousteau) is doing some #whale petting while being filmed by one of the many media. A few seconds later he had his hat lifted by a happy-snotting. As much fun as it was, as the day wore on, the sun grew hotter, and the wind picked up. The excitement was also exhausting, and now most of us were wet... chilling off in the breeze from the Pacific. Jean-Michel's sunburned face is yet one other indication it is time to take a break, head into shore, and seek food, beer, and relief from the noonday sun in the shelter of our tent community.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #65:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #65: BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU ASK FOR! The excited gray whale calf that first started pushing the Brosnan/Kennedy/Close panga around, slipped under the boat for awhile, only to surface because Bobby Kennedy and Pierce Brosnan's son stuck their heads in the water and "called" to it. More than happy to have the attention, the gigantic baby came right over to those that "called" it looking to be petted and scratched. Since everyone was more than willing there was quite an exchange of affection. Expressing it's happiness, the calf blew a huge exhalation of whale-snot that Pierce and one of the girls takes pretty much directly in the face. Check their expressions thru the haze. Sometime love comes to us in strange ways...
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #64:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #64: Apparently whatever #PierceBrosnan's son and #BobbyKennedy did when they stuck their heads in the water WORKED! To everyone's great joy the sizable calf surfaced quite close by. I am sure made curious by the squealing of all the girls! The whale lolled on the surface for a moment and then started to swim over to those that had summoned it. It seemed very clear that it knew who they were...
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, March 11, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #63:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #63: The young #whale that had been pushing the Kennedy / Brosnan / Close panga finally slipped beneath them, so in an attempt to lure the baby over to the girls' side of the boat, without hesitation both Bobny Kennedy and Pierce Brosnan's son plunged their heads and shoulders over the side and into the water hoping to make underwater noise or gestures that would bring the calf back to the surface. Pierce struggles to contain one of the youngest girls from falling in, and the "professional" photographer on board is being attacked by his equipment, so he missed the action entirely.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #62:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #62: With their panga being driven by whale-power, Bobby Kennedy (@RobertKennedyJr) shows considerable excitement, nimbleness, and good balance, as he and Pierce Brosnan's (@PierceBrosnan) son try to encourage their new friend to stop pushing and come alongside. The Kennedy daughters are adding their encouragement, hoping it will be THEIR side, and Pierce stands on the bow, trying to get pictures of it all. Check the poor guide / panga operator who doesn't want any of these "stars" falling out of boat - he has Bobby's lifevest strap in one hand, and Bobby's daughters' strap in the other 'cause he is sure someone is going overboard.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #61:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #61: The panga-bonking baby #whale set off a frenzy of whale-fun - the other boats came over to watch the calf push us around, and then (nothing attracts a crowd more than a crowd) more whales got curious and came to watch it all as well. Soon everybody was in the act. LOTS of whale petting and tongue scratching, a few drive-by snotings, and two of the adults actually splashed us using their large flippers like kids in a water fight. With so many #whales of all ages and sizes around us, each panga "crew" was trying various techniques to attract them within reach - there was noise-making, and water-splashing, but after Bobby Kennedy immersed himself pretty thoroughly in a petting-frenzy, a new approach was born and the Brosnan panga crew pioneered the way.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #60:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #60: On this particular morning the #whales seemed to be everywhere, AND especially friendly. An interesting aspect of having touch contact with them is it is a kind of high. Once you have done it, you want to do it again ...and to be more daring. Initially, the first touch is usually a little apprehensive, but once that happens, then the outright petting begins. If Bobby Kennedy's (@RobertKennedyJr) shirt and hair look wet, it is because he has been dunking himself over the side while vigorously stroking a playful calf that is literally pushing our panga around by rubbing against it.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #59:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #59: No sooner had that thought crossed my mind, then the echo of a #whale "spouting" resonated behind me and we all turned to see our first curious "friend" of the morning approaching the panga. One of the most remarkable aspects about the #whales of #SanIgnacioLagoon is that they have established a physical relationship with humans. They specifically seem to enjoy human touch, and since this is a #calving area, the trusting mothers allow their babies to approach us. Young whales are like PUPPIES!! They are curious, friendly, and LOVE to be touched and scratched, especially around their mouths.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #58:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #58: Food and conversation in the "dining" tent eventually came to an end and I am sure most of us were grateful for the luxurious sleeping bags and elevated cots in our private tents because the #Pacific generated a howling and cold onshore wind ALL night. Dawn broke clear and cold, but began to warm quickly with the sunrise. After breakfast, we were all equally eager to encounter the whales again. The panga I boarded went furthest out, near the mouth of the bay and the open Pacific. The skyshow #weather streamed directly over us, coming out of the vast ocean in front of us ...then, in another of "those" moments, I realized that what I had discovered yesterday, and what lay in front of me today allowed me to understand AND SEE the pulse of life. In #SanIgnacioLagoon, the tides and weather from the Pacific surge in-and-out feeding, cleaning, flooding, shaping, and nuturing the habitat. The whales know,..the lagoon is a confluence of many powerful, life-giving forces.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #57:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #57: By the time I got back to camp, the afternoon activities were long underway. Many people were out in the #lagoon communing with the #whales, most of the rest were in various presentations being given by the Natural Resources Defense Council (#NRDC), #ProNatura, or some of the other #NGO partners that were part of the campaign. I was exhausted and dehydrated, so I perched in the shade of a tent for awhile, drank and ate a bit, and watched the spectacle of the lagoon play out to the end of the day. Eventually the boats returned, the #tide drew out once again, the cold wind off the #Pacific picked-up and we all retreated to the kitchen/dining tent to ponder the amazing things the day(s) offered.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #56:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #56: Camp was not far away, just far enough to be a hot, dry trek. Getting there also required a good bit of observant navigation so that you were not picked of by a #crown-of-thorns branch or a wind-tumbled #cholla-cactus ball. As I wound my way home cautiously, the "desert" at my feet reminded me of the riches of #SanIgnacioLagoon, and how my fortunate adventure in the #mangroves and my walk along the "ledges" of the shore provided me with a deeper understanding of how all of these things were connected, creating this remarkable, thriving, #whale-birthing sanctuary.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, January 14, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #55:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #55: After thrashing and slogging my way through the stubbly brush and away from the flooding #mangrove channels, I finally reached the edge of the #desert. I wanted to go up onto a small dune in hopes of a view of the #camp. As I expected, it was within sight and not far away, but when I turned around to view where I had just been, the larger perspective revealed to me the visual layers of the complex #ecosystem I had just traversed - an amazing #micro-niche of life and water at the edge of one of the world's driest places. Standing in the blazing, shell-strewn sand, I gazed back across the remarkable progression of #vegetation (and living things) the swampy mangrove system supports. You can see the scrub that was my bushwhack, beyond it the #egret is hunting in a soggy, saturated stand of grasses, and those taller, leafy bushes/trees are the mangrove channels, now filled by the incoming #tide. Whatever is going on here, it apparently makes the whales happy...
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, January 7, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #54:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #54: Well, it wasn't exactly bone dry, it just wasn't being covered by the incoming #tide. And, it did not look like the #desert surrounding camp. I stood in a saline #groundwater zone, where a density of plants thrived it a salty #environment. These plants were densely entwined, relatively low to the ground, and full of prickly, stout twigs and thorny branches. Every once-in-awhile, the solid ground gave way to soft, wet sand and brackish water, some of which you could see, and some of which was hidden beneath the mat of plants. I wasn't really walking so much as stumbling from one stable point to another, but as I moved away from the #mangrove channel, I could feel the inland heat returning and the surrounding air was quickly losing its humidity.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2014, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #53:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #53: The inflow of water, a.k.a. the incoming #tide, was pretty rapid. Soon all land was covered by water and I moved up into some large #mangrove roots to stay dry. Then it became clear to me the tide was going MUCH higher as I found dried eel grass in the branches ABOVE me! Where there is a will, there is a way! As it turned out, you could "penetrate" the dense mangroves if you REALLY wanted to, and in a very short distance I was standing in the bone-dry #desert once again. Looking back, I realized it was good to move to dry land when I did.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, December 24, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #52:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #52: INFLOWING ? In my reverie I hadn't been thinking about #tidal change which probably occurred sometime during my bird/water choral, but by the time I discovered the infowing water at my feet, the shoreline of #SanIgnacioLagoon which I had previously being walking along, had submerged. That #tide was now creeping toward me and I was unsure of exactly how high the flow might rise, but since I wasn't walking out the way I came in, and getting through the #mangroves seemed unlikely, I decided to hold my ground and see what would happen...
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #51:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #51: I am not sure how long I stood there listening, but eventually I came out of my reverie and began to look around. Although I could hear many birds I could see nothing because of the dense mangroves. I did notice some small, bright fish darting about in the pools though... and then something else as well. Staring into the pools following the fish, I realized I was looking at the water-flow that created those strange ripple-like patterns in the sand I stumbled across in my walk up the channel from #SanIgnacioLagoon (previous post #49). Hypnotizing in its undulations and subtle water-noise, it took me a while to realize THIS WATER WAS INFLOWING!
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, December 10, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #50:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #50: Still pondering my expansive connective thought and the strange, hallucinatory shoreline I discovered (previous post), I continued my walk "upriver", away from #SanIgnacioLagoon and into the ever-deepening #mangroves now choking the outflowing stream of #water. Often walking in the shallow water, I continued to where #channels began to divide. I hesitated to go much further, because by now it was becoming confusing and the mangroves were above my head, obscuring my view of anything. They had also become too dense to penetrate. As I stood there in the quietude, I first became aware of the sound-rhythm of the water,..then I realized I was also starting to hear birds,..initially a few, but then MANY #birds. Apparently they grew silent at my approach and now they were adjusting to my presence... together with the water and the occasional rustle of a #Pacific breeze in the mangroves, it was quite a concert.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, December 3, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #49:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #49: Some times, if you are lucky enough to have a cosmic thought, you might also encounter a "cosmic" visual equivalent. A few steps further up the #mangrove drainage channel feeding into #SanIgnacioLagoon, the mangroves began to grow more densely at the water's edge, so I stepped through them to find this - Am I standing in water? Is the sand even wet? And, what are those white things... litter? Is this an site-installation by Sarah Sze? Strange-beautiful as it was, these odd configurations of sand, kelp debris, and dried grasses distracted me from connecting the flow patterns in the sand with the hi-water mark of the shoreline. Eventually I would understand.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, November 26, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #48:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #48: When I am “in” a project, between shots and during long hikes, I think about a wide range of things. It was at this point in #SanIgnacioLagoon another of those moments (read "cosmic flash" if you lived thru the '60's) occurred: At my feet, shells of lives lost were becoming rock shelf, a new planet-surface was materializing; vegetation was establishing and sprouting forth from that shell-rock being created; that vegetation growth would become mangrove forests – a perfect habitat for more life whose debris would feed the shellfish; and in the lagoon, some of the largest mammals on earth were giving birth, while seabirds feasted between tides leaving more empty shells - WAW !!!
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, November 19, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #47:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #47: So here I am walking the shoreline of #SanIgnacioLagoon adjacent one of the driest deserts in the world, and my walk is redirected by the need to navigate around a SUBSTANTIAL stream of water flowing FROM the desert. Now walking “upriver”, as I progressed, the first vegetation I had seen in a long while that didn’t look dried up or dead appeared. As I would soon realize, these were new #mangroves sprouting from seeds being carried “downriver” by the outflowing tide.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, November 12, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #46:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #46: #SanIgnacioLagoon and the adjacent million-acre+ #VizcainoBiosphereReserve are among the driest places on earth. The desert around our beach encampment during the #NRDC campaign to protect the birthing #whales in the #lagoon was hot, dry, and generally a pretty unforgiving environment without much visible water - even the cactus and crown-of-thorns seemed to be struggling to survive.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, November 5, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #45:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #45: While exploring the #low-tide flats of #SanIgnacioLagoon, I noticed what appeared to be outflow “#streams” coming from one of the #driest #landscapes in the world. Eventually I came to one such #channel that was so wide and deep I had to turn “#upstream” in hopes of finding a suitable place to cross over and continue my hike. Where does this large flow come from?
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, October 29, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #44:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #44: With the #tide flowing out of #SanIgnacioLagoon into the #Pacific, the flat, muddy #seabed was much easier to navigate than the crumbling, slab-strewn #shoreline. At first, I walked out to the edge of the shallows, but as I wandered along that edge, I intersected what appeared to be #river-like #channels of out-flowing #water, coming from a desert that had no such waterways.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, October 22, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #43:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #43: Massive layers of #shells compressed into the #mud on the #floor of #SanIgnacioLagoon in #Baja were not the only part of the #fossil record. This #lagoon is a unique #gray #whale #birthing area and #nursery hosting #mothers and their #calves for several months, while the newborn claves grow in size and strength in preparation for #migration north to #Alaskan #waters in the summer. Not everyone makes it.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, October 15, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #42:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #42: Continuing to ponder what #Jean-MichelCousteau and others had to say about the #habitat of #SanIgnacioLagoon, I decided to have a closer look at the whole system. The broken, shell-filled, layers of compressed #seafloor that created the #lagoon edge were tricky to navigate, so I scrambled down thru the slabs to walk on the #seabed being exposed by the falling tide. Looking back toward camp from the perspective of the #beach, the rugged #shoreline offered a unique view of the #fossil-making process that was creating the lagoon.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, October 8, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #41:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #41: Like a crumbling layer-cake, the #shoreline of #SanIgnacioLagoon was littered with mud slabs conglomerated with #seashells. Our camp and media event - just a very few feet away - were being staged on a #seafloor bottom slowly being uplifted into an arid #desert land. At the #tidal edge, #mosses grew on the slabs making them slippery. Navigating this shoreline to get to the #water required selecting a stabile route.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


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Tuesday, October 1, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #40:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #40: The actual #shoreline edge of #SanIgnacioLagoon in #Baja was not a sandy #beach, but rather a coarse, irregular rock that seemed a bit like #lava. Closer scrutiny revealed it was not really rock but rather eons of #seashells that had collected on the seafloor and become embedded in compressed layers of sand and mud. As several of us found out, those edges were barely solid enough to support our weight, and every once in awhile, a section would collapse from the presence of someone standing above.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS


Follow Robert Glenn Ketchum's Photographic Activism Online:

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Tuesday, September 24, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #39:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #39: As I listened to #Jean-Michel Cousteau speak about the elements that make up the #habitat of San Ignacio Lagoon, I began to realize that the #lagoon was being “built” by the very life forms that thrived there. Staring down at the beach at my feet, I suddenly saw that it wasn't really a #beach, but more a #seabed littered with #shells made apparent by the lowering #tide.
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

Follow Robert Glenn Ketchum's Photographic Activism Online:
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Tuesday, September 17, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #38:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #38: Down at the #shoreline of San Ignacio Lagoon under a blazing midday #sun, #Jean-Michel Cousteau talks to #MaryKennedy, #GlennClose and their daughters about the #biodiversity of the #bay that attracts and supports the #birthing #gray #whales. An essential part of that #ecosystem is scattered on the #beach behind them…
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, September 3, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #37:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #37: Opportunities to go out in a boat amongst the #whales were scheduled every morning and afternoon. In between, if you were not resting from the heat/wind/weather assault, the personalities, scientists and lawyers gave #presentations to the #media attendees, explaining the #biological value of the #lagoon and possible alternatives to allowing the proposed #industrial #salt #plant to be built. Here, Robert Kennedy, Jr., representing the Natural Resources Defense Council (#NRDC) speaks to a collection of international press.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, August 27, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #36:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #36: One of the great pleasures of being part of the #NRDC #media event to keep a proposed #Mitsubishi #salt #plant from being built in San Ignacio Lagoon was that our effort – and the #stars that had been invited: Bobby Kennedy and family; Glenn Close and family; Pierce Brosnan and son; Cousteau and film crew – attracted a LARGE #international #media presence. It also attracted a fair amount of @local interest. As a consequence, the evening entertainment in the “dining tent” got livelier as the night wore on, thanks to local musicians... and good tequila
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, August 20, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #35:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #35: Our #media #event to draw #attention to a proposed #industrial #salt #development in a #gray #whale #birthing #lagoon in #Baja drew quite a collection of #stars and #world #press - it also occurred during an unusually cool season. #Outfitters had supplied us all with very comfy 2 and 4-man tents featuring cots and sleeping bags. Larger tents housed porta-potties / showers, and the largest tent of all was the dining hall. With a stunningly cold wind off the #Pacific howling outside, this big tent became a welcome, WARM refuge. After dinner, Bobby Kennedy plays #backgammon with #GlennClose as their daughters look on, and Chris Isaak's "Baja Sessions" croons softly over conversations made lively-er by tequila and beer.... Hey, it's Mexico!!! Even if Bobby does have on 6-layers of clothing and everyone is sporting fleece.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, August 13, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #34:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #34: The morning adventures with the #whales is usually a "warming" part of the day, but at any time out on the #lagoon, the #blazing #sun, #cool #breezes off the Pacific, and occasional #splashing you might get from a #wave or a #whale encounter sucks #energy and #heat out of you. A lunch break is restoring, but by the time the afternoon whale encounters begin to wind down, it is late in the day and MUCH cooler. The wind off the Pacific can be punishing and VERY cold. In the warm light of the fading sun, CAMP STARTS TO LOOK PRETTY GREAT!!!! @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Sunday, August 11, 2013
WANT TO ESTABLISH CONTACT??? Because of my Tuesday FB post, SAN IGNACIO WHALES (telling the story of an #NRDC campaign I was part of to protect a gray #whale birthing lagoon in #Baja) LOTS of people have been asking if they can visit San Ignacio and interact with these amazing mammals. The season is brief; the weeks are few; the best operators are in high demand. Some of the most informed / most responsible trips are with the Natural Resources Defense Council (@NRDC) and for 2014, YOU TOO CAN DO THIS as part of one of these trips:

Feb 18th-22nd      
March 2nd-6th
March 10th-14th

Contact: Natural Resources Defense Council | 1314 Second Street | Santa Monica, CA 90401
Phone: (310) 434-2300 | Fax: (310) 434-2399 | www.NRDC.org
Hope YOU have fun !
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, August 6, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #33:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #33: Have you ever #kissed a #whale? Here's a shot from an #NRDC trip in San Ignacio Lagoon, #Baja, getting VERY affectionate with a curious #gray #whale #calf. If you would like to do this, NRDC is offering 3 trips next year, 2014. I posted those dates on FB last weekend and will do so again this weekend. This is an amazing opportunity that should not be missed. 
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Sunday, August 4, 2013
WISH THIS WERE YOUR HAND ??? Because of my Tuesday FB post/SAN IGNACIO WHALES (telling the story of an NRDC campaign I was part of to protect a gray whale birthing lagoon in Baja) LOTS of people have been asking if they can visit San Ignacio and interact with these amazing mammals. The season is brief; the weeks are few; the best operators are in high demand. Some of the most informed/most responsible trips are with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and for 2014, YOU TOO CAN DO THIS as part of one of these trips:
Feb 18th-22nd
March 2nd-6th
March 10th-14th
Contact: Natural Resources Defense Council | 1314 Second Street | Santa Monica, CA 90401
Phone: (310) 434-2300 | Fax: (310) 434-2399 | www.NRDC.org
Hope YOU have fun!
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, July 30, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #32:
SAN IGNACIO #WHALES #32: Once #contact is established with a group in a #panga, there is a "secret signal" - or something - between the #whales that sets off interest in the other whales and indicates to the #calves our #boat is "safe". Calves are #children, and just as curious. They are also less cautious than their #mothers, so once they get in the "affection" cycle - LOOK OUT - 'cause they get really excited, often "bumping" the boat and rubbing against it.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #31:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #31: THE MOMENT OF TRUTH - a female #gray #whale that had been "#eyeing" us makes #contact. As seemingly #affectionate as any dog, this #marine mammal 3x the size of our boat is lolling around on the surface next to us, allowing lots of #petting and is just as interested in us as we are in her. At these moments, when passengers rush to one side of the boat hoping to touch her, others aboard do an interesting #dance, shifting positions to balance the #panga so it does not flip over.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, July 16, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #30:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #30: Curious-er, and curious-er, closer and closer, that big beautiful #eye watching us and trying to figure out if we might be inclined to #play. Just another wonderful morning in #SanIgnacioLagoon as we are "investigated" by a #gray #whale.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, July 9, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #29:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #29: It is looking like a GREAT start to the day: 1st this adult female #gray #whale surprised everyone with a very close "spy-hop" and now she is circling and "studying" us with her huge #eyes... Perhaps she is thinking about getting petted, or getting her tongue scratched, or maybe she has a baby she wants to introduce to us - it really does not matter what happens, just being this close to this huge, friendly #mammal is an experience hard to explain, but unimaginably uplifting.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, July 2, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #28:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #28: In #SanIgnacioLagoon in #Baja, #California, you cannot pursue the #birthing #whales and their #calves, you must wait patiently in the #boats and hope to attract their attention. The whales do a little distant "spy-hopping" to check you out and then they may move in closer for an underwater pass. In this case, this whale decided to do a surprise "hop" - right next to the boat. At this range, scale changes, this is a BIG, curious girl...
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, June 25, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #27:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #27: The #whales in San Ignacio lagoon didn't care about no stinking #media, they wanted some engagement and they definitely had noticed that we were all out in the #boats, so they were "#spying" on us and edging closer. From this distance, you know it's big, but it is hard to tell just yet HOW BIG!
Photograph © 2013 Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, June 18, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #26:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #26: Besides #GlennClose and daughters, @RobertKennedyJr and family, and @PierceBrosnan with his son, our guests also included #filmmaker @JMCousteau (standing, far left), @HomeroAridjis w his wife, #BettyFerber, and their friends from the Mexican #ElGrupoDeLosCien, a circle of #writers, #poets, #artists and #intellectuals.  #JohnAdams, @NRDC founder, his wife Patricia, and their friends, #FAOSchwarz and his wife, Dr. Frederica Perera, who at the time were NRDC Trustees, and they were joined by Mexican #environmental leaders  #PatriciaMartinez of #ProEsteros, and #RobertoEnriquez of @PronaturaMexico. The "whale" #painter, #RobertWyland,  #photographers, #MarkSobol, #RobertTalbot (dolphins and whales) and myself, plus #writers from the @LATimes, #Time magazine, and @audubonmagazine were just the tip of the #media entourage. You were not even safe in the #pangas! We came to see the whales BUT...
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, June 11, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #25:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #25: The invited "#stars" were put in separate #boats with their "families and friends". The #media were in other boats and we chased them around taking #pictures and doing #interviews (#panga papparazzi). Here #GlennClose flashes a 1st-adventure-of-the-morning smile as a #camera crew in Jean-Michel Cousteau's boat awaits her departure (@JMCousteau in middle). She will be glad she has her camera in a plastic bag. 
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, June 4, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #24:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #24: Bringing all of these people to San Ignacio Lagoon in the remote and arid #Baja #desert, feeding them, and housing them was only part of the organizational challenge. We had a "#media" purpose and so it was necessary to schedule things to keep "order", otherwise it was like herding cats. Not yet sure how we were to be received by the #birthing #whales and their #calves, after an early breakfast some select #media and the collection of personalities that had been assembled took the first #pangas out into the #lagoon. Needless to say, there were A LOT of cameras involved...
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, May 28, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #23:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #23: Compared to what I was used to from my #journeys, especially #Alaska, the #tents provided at San Ignacio Lagoon were #luxurious: ample room to stand and dress, small chairs that worked well for cocktails on the bluff in the evening as well, and cots with sleeping bags and sheets. With a bit of "home" decorating from both staff and guests, the arid #desert #landscape around our base #camp was embellished in numerous artful ways that made it seem less stark.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, May 21, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #22:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #22: Dawn the next day found me in that same sling-chair, now pondering the dream-like colored sky reflections on the wet sand during an extremely low tide. It occurred to me that I should have some breakfast and talk a walk on this amazing exposed #tidal plain. The #whales can usually be visited twice a day, and since much of the day before me was out on the open water with them (and 1/2 the media in South America), I now looked forward to some quiet time to #photograph other things and further ponder the totality of the #lagoon.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, May 14, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #21:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #21: Some of us arrived by car, but most came in by plane. A couple of #cargo #planes with limited seating were used to shuttle "the guests" and needed supplies from major airports to the #desert #landing #strip. During one take off with many of the #media #stars aboard, someone noticed an engine leaking oil... SO, back to the terminal, repair, then back in the air- same plane! Considering the clients, everyone seemed bravely comfortable, but if you are wondering why all the smiles, they are just glad to be on the ground in #Baja.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, May 7, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #20:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #20: In 1997, when #NRDC staged this #media #campaign, San Ignacio Lagoon had little surrounding development, a few towns / villages, some inland ranches and an occasional family #fishing compound, SO supporting several hundred people on a remote beach for a week was a #logistical #challenge. Getting the needed supplies and the people to the site was done with school buses and vans that met the guests at the #airport - this is the airport - all of it! Not going to be any custom delays here. The orange wind-sock in the distance is the "landing tower."
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, April 30, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #19:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #19: SO, here is the "star" team assembled by NRDC attorneys Joel Reynolds and Jacob Scherr who hoped these well known personalities would help create world-wide publicity about Mitsubishi's proposal to build an industrial salt extraction plant in the middle of San Ignacio Lagoon, a gray whale birthing area. From the left is NRDC founder and his wife, John and Patricia Adams; the blond woman in front (yellow parka) is Glenn Close; Bobby Kennedy is behind Glenn, then to Bobby's right are Jacob Scherr, Joel Reynolds and Pierce Brosnan.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, April 23, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #18:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #18: Putting their heads together, #JoelReynolds and #JacobScherr of #NRDC planned a huge #media #event that would span borders. Well known public faces / media stars would be invited to come with their families and see these #whales in San Ignacio lagoon which would then generate #global #coverage. Among the many to enjoy this week were John and Patricia Adams. John was a founder of NRDC and my good friend of many years and many campaigns.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, April 16, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #17:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #17: When #JoelReynolds (left), Senior Attorney of the West Coast office of the NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) took interest in San Ignacio Lagoon, he brought in his east coast NRDC colleague / attorney, #JacobScherr (right) and longtime NRDC counsel and supporter, Robert (Bobby) Kennedy, Jr (middle) seen here enjoying an afternoon at the shoreline.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, April 9, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #16:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #16: As an award-winning #journalist with many influential friends, the words of #HomeroAridjis reached many people. When he wrote about the proposed #Mitsubishi development of San Ignacio Lagoon, a unique #gray #whale #birthing #lagoon in #Baja, one of those that took interest was #JoelReynolds (2nd from left, looking at camera), Senior Attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council's (#NRDC) West Coast office.
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, April 2, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #15:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #15: Who are the WE that had come to San Ignacio Lagoon in hopes of preventing #Mitsubishi from building an #industrial #salt-extraction #plant in a #gray #whale #birthing #sanctuary? The 1st to raise #public #awareness about the proposed #development was #Mexican #author and #journalist, #Homero #Aridjis. Former Mexican #ambassador to the #Netherlands and #Switzerland, author of more than 40 books, winner of 2 #Guggenheims, and founder of "The Group of 100" - an association of #intellectuals and #artists - when Homero spoke of this threat to the #whales, he caught the attention of an international audience.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, March 26, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #14:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #14: Regardless of our #media tasks and purpose, none of us were quite prepared for the encounters we were about to have with THESE #whales. There are only three (3) #gray #whale #birthing #lagoons on the entire #Pacific coast - all in #Baja - but ONLY in #San Ignacio do the whales "engage" their viewers so willingly. Close? Hand held, #Pentax 645 with #Fuji 50 film and a 150mm lens from which I had to clean the snot-spray after this pass.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, March 19, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #13:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #13: It is not the #flora WE have come for though... but rather the #fauna: out in the #lagoon #female #gray #whales are #birthing #calves and #nurturing them for some weeks before taking them into the greater #Pacific. WE are hoping to interact with them. Each of "the guests" has a particular role in the NRDC #campaign, mine is witness to the complex beauty of the lagoon - here a #whale and #bird watch the #sun go down, a grab shot just out of the flap of my tent.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, March 12, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #12:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #12: San Ignacio Lagoon is an extensive and #dynamic #ecosystem with many components. The large #tidal #fluctuations expose #shellfish and other #marine #organisms to thousands of #birds twice a day. #Mangrove #seeds floating on the #tide get left by receding #water to establish new #groves, and in turn those groves stabilize, clean, and nourish the #estuary complex.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, March 5, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #11:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #11: Finally the hot, arid #desert gives way to the #shoreline of San Ignacio lagoon. Pulsing with #tidal shifts, the edges of the #lagoon teem with life. Out where the #water is deeper, #gray #whales have given #birth to #calves they are #nursing within the #protection of the lagoon before they venture into the greater waters of the #Pacific for the first time.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, February 26, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #10:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #10: After several hours of driving through the #hot, #dry, and visually-slightly-alien #desert, there is a noticeable #cooling in the air and a #marine #breeze picks up as we get closer to the #shores of San Ignacio Lagoon. The return of #moisture brings with it a more #vibrant #ecosystem of #cacti, #scrubbrush, and #mangrove shorelines with large #tidal fluctuations.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, February 19, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #9:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #9: #Salt #extraction was the current "#industrial" #threat to the #gray #whale #birthing #lagoon, but previously, there had been a rich #scallop #fishery which was decimated by #overfishing. Mounds of discarded scallop #shells also appeared along our road through the #desert - a most unusual drive - little #vegetation, brilliantly colored #algal #pools crusted with #salt, and all of it occasionally punctuated by huge piles of #seashells.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, February 12, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #8:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #8: As the #pools from #saltwater #tidal #flooding #stagnate and slowly #evaporate, #algal colors take on rainbow hues and #salt encrusts the ground. It is this very process of salt accumulation - but at an industrial level - that #Mitsubishi wanted to develop within the #gray #whale #birthing #habitat of San Ignacio Lagoon.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, February 5, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #7:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #7: The #dirt / #sand road that approaches #SanIgnacioLagoon stretches for many miles (and hours). The #land is exceptionally #flat and #hightides inundate much acreage including parts of the road, leaving #pools in their retreat. #Radiant #heatwaves cause the #desert to shimmer and #water #mirages appear as frequently as do actual pools.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, January 29, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #6:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #6: As the #rugged, #arid #terrain of #ElVizcaínoBiosphereReserve kisses the coast, the exchange between the #Pacific and the #desert creates a constantly shifting #thermal dynamic of #wind, #humidity, #atmosphere and #light, all of it magnified by the presence of #SanIgnacioLagoon.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, January 22, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #5:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #5: On the ground the #ElVizcaínoBiosphereReserve is as rugged as it appears from the air. The #biodiversity begins to reveal itself but the #landscape is distinctively marked by its #volcanic #history.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, January 15, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #4:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #4: #ElVizcaínoBiosphereReserve is #Mexico's largest #protected area. Stunningly #dry, it's #biodiversity is quite amazing, hosting over 460 #flora #species and - thanks to the #lagoons and #wetlands - over 300 #terrestrial and #marine #vertebrates, the #gray #whale being the largest. Then there are all those #birds and #fish...
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, January 8, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #3:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #3: South, past the #Mitsubishi #salt #complex at #GuerreroNegro, the #desert #landscape is spare and marked by considerable #volcanic activity. This is the #ElVizcaínoBiosphereReserve, over 1-million #acres of #Internationally recognized and #protected desert #habitat... and one of the driest places in the world. 
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, January 1, 2013
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #2:
SAN IGNACIO WHALES #2: The #Baja #Peninsula is a spectacular #desert divided down the middle by a significant #mountain #range. On the #Pacific side, many #beaches provide great #surfing and several #lagoons are #birthing areas for the #gray #whale. As you fly south along the peninsula, the 1st great lagoon you encounter, #GuerreroNegro, used to host whales, but they have been displaced by a #Mitsubishi #salt #production #complex.
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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Tuesday, December 25, 2012
San Ignacio Lagoon: SAVED For the Whales! #1:
SAVED FOR the Whales - San Ignacio Lagoon #1: Wishing you the best for the Holidays, I thought I would end the year by dropping a new POSITIVE story. Tuesdays will be dedicated to the Natural Resources Defence Council (#NRDC) #campaign that kept a #whale #birthing #lagoon from #industrial #development. You will enjoy this 'cause the #whales like to be petted!!! Here Jean-Michel Cousteau encounters a gray whale, San Ignacio Lagoon, Baja - Peace To Earth to all of you! ~Robert Glenn Ketchum 
Photograph © Robert Glenn Ketchum @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #SanIgnacioLagoon @NRDC @AudubonMagazine @RobertKennedyJr @PierceBrosnan @JMCousteau @HomeroAridjis @ProNaturaMexico @PentaxOnline @FujiFilmUS

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