Carlton Ward Jr (@carltonward)@NatGeo  Explorer | Focused on the Hidden Wild | #PathofthePanther  | @SeaLegacy  Collective | Founder @FL_WildCorridor  #FloridaWild 
#NatGeo100Contest - I am thankful to be a contributor to @Natgeo which just hit
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#NatGeo100Contest - I am thankful to be a contributor to @Natgeo which just hit 100 million followers! To share the love, they are having a photo contest through 10 AM EST today that will give you a chance to be featured on @NatGeo. To submit, simply post your most Nat Geo inspired photo on your feed using the hashtag #NatGeo100Contest. The top 10 photos will be posted on @natgeo and the winner gets a photo trip to Tanzania. See more details in my story. This photo is of sunset over the reef at Nusa Lembongan, Bali, where I spent a month in the summer of 2007. The man with his boat is harvesting seaweed in the shallows as a wave breaks on the reef beyond. #Bali@natgeoimagecollection
20.02.2019 12:34:01
#NatGeo100Contest - I am thankful to be a contributor to @Natgeo which just hit
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#NatGeo100Contest - I am thankful to be a contributor to @Natgeo which just hit 100 million followers! To share the love, they are having a photo contest for the next 24 hours only that will give you a chance to be featured on @NatGeo. To submit, simply post your most Nat Geo inspired photo on your feed using the hashtag #NatGeo100Contest. The top 10 photos will be posted on @natgeo and the winner gets a photo trip to Tanzania. This photo of a red shouldered hawk getting ready to eat a water snake on Buck Island Ranch in Florida was my most popular on the @NatGeo feed last year with nearly 1.5 million likes. If your photo gets selected to post perhaps it will get even more! Remember to tag #NatGeo100Contest in the next 24 hours.
19.02.2019 15:04:58
When she’s not working cows with her family, attending college or competing in s
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When she’s not working cows with her family, attending college or competing in softball, Seminole Indian cowgirl @ahniejumper ropes and and barrel races in the Eastern Indian Rodeo Association. Her grace in the saddle and speed was impressive to see. After a photo shoot at the Palm Beach Zoo, I was able to catch this rodeo at the Brighton Reservation. Thankfully I still had a 400 2.8 on loan from @sonyalpha. I was able to shoot it with my #A9 handheld and freeze the action under dim fluorescent lights. Maybe a 300 would have been better for this distance, and I could have kept the horse’s nose in frame. But I loved the way the 400 isolated Ahnie from the busy background. I look forward to shooting more rodeo action in the coming months. Ahnie’s sister, two brothers, dad, uncles, aunts and cousins all compete in rodeos. The Seminole Tribe of Florida is one of the leading cattle producers in America and ranching helps keep families like the Jumpers connected to their heritage in the Everglades. #Seminole#LivingHeritage#FloridaWild
18.02.2019 18:03:09
This week I had the privilege of photographing Sassy, an almost 4-year old Flori
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This week I had the privilege of photographing Sassy, an almost 4-year old Florida panther who lives at the Palm Beach Zoo. Her mother was killed by a car near Naples in 2014 and Sassy was the only of three kittens to survive. Biologists from @myfwc took her to @naples_zoo for immediate care in their animal hospital and she was later moved to the @palmbeachzoo for her permanent home where hundreds of thousands of visitors have a chance to see her each year. In addition to caring for injured and abandoned panthers, and giving homes to panthers that can’t be released to the wild, zoos serve an important role in educating the public about panthers and their conservation needs. Just a few minutes looking at this beautiful creature and anyone is going to fall in love. I’ve been chasing panthers in the wild with camera traps for 3 years and have seen two panthers in the wild with my own eyes. So I was mesmerized by the opportunity to observe Sassy in her large enclosure. Her grace, power and stealth was awe inspiring. At one point she jumped 10 feet down from a tree and landed on the ground right in front of me under full control without making a sound! Go see her yourself! Here a few photos from by visit with Sassy, all shot through the steel mesh of her habitat. Which is your favorite? Thanks @sonyalpha for loaning me a 400 2.8 lens that allowed me to produce wonderfully sharp photos with the foreground and background out of focus, and all handheld because the lens is so lightweight. Thanks to the @panthers_florida foundation, Fox Sports Miami and Zoo President Margo McKnight for working with me to share the #pathofthepanther story! #morethanamascot#PantherPortrait#FloridaWild#KeepFLWild
16.02.2019 12:43:13
A heart shaped petal floats on the waters of the Fakahatchee Strand. I believe i
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A heart shaped petal floats on the waters of the Fakahatchee Strand. I believe it’s from a pond apple flower. Maybe the petals are like a boats adapted to ride slow currents and sustain the forest by delivering seeds to pockets of swamp beyond the reach of the parent trees’ branches. Can any botanists or naturalists out there please confirm or correct this ID and caption? Update from @benjistudtphoto: “Nailed the petal ID! (Way cool photo, btw!) But on the seed theory...seeds develop later inside the fruit (which is pretty tasty if you like things that are tart). I believe the fruits do float...but are generally falling just before the wet season...so most are dispersed by all the hungry swamp critters!” Thank you! So much for my seed boat theory but tasty fruit dispersed my animals is super cool. #pondapple#love#swamp#FloridaWild#KeepFLWild
14.02.2019 14:18:43
This is a favorite photograph of an American alligator and one of my post popula
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This is a favorite photograph of an American alligator and one of my post popular art prints. It was also a lesson in light. Many people have asked me why the gator looks blue. The reason is the juxtaposition of warm and cool light. The sun had just dropped below the tree line and their entire surface of the pond was in cool shadow, making the gray gator appear blue, and even more so against the warm sunset rays that were catching the tops of the cypress trees and reflecting on the water. I was following the gator with a 600mm lens, waiting and hoping that he would swim through the bright and colorful reflection. Shot at Babcock Ranch State Preserve. #alligator#gator#swamp#floridawildlifecorridor#FloridaWild#KeepFLWild#PathofthePanther@natgeoimagecollection
09.02.2019 13:37:38
A boy rides his horse in the Macal River just upstream of its confluence with th
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A boy rides his horse in the Macal River just upstream of its confluence with the Mopan River in San Ignacio Belize. I was doing a story on the Macal River for a @uflorida photojournalism course in 2001, just before a controversial hydroelectric dam was built a few miles upstream from San Ignacio. The previous day, fellow photographer Eric Zamora and I were documenting the headwaters of the Macal further up in the Maya Mountains when we capsized our canoe and drowned all of our camera equipment. Thankfully I had a Nikon FM2 as a backup camera that is fully mechanical and operates even when wet. That camera and a bit of luck saved my assignment on the final day. I swam out into the river with water up to my neck to capture this moment of life connected to the Macal River. It was published in newspapers and magazines in Belize, the US and Canada. Had I not drowned my other camera the day before, I might not have had the courage to go for this shot. But I had already been baptized by the river at that point and didn’t hesitate to jump in. Thankfully the trusty FM2 and a role of Velvia helped get the job done. #Belize#Macal#River#Horse@natgeoimagecollection#FM2#Velvia
06.02.2019 22:07:57
Florida Growth and How to Manage it. Check out the radio program Florida Matters
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Florida Growth and How to Manage it. Check out the radio program Florida Matters at 6:30 EST today on @wusfpublicmedia 89.7 FM. Host Steve Newborn interviews me and planning expert Paul Owen from 1000 Friends of Florida. These photos are from one of the most challenged regions of the Florida Wildlife Corridor near Orlando and a foreshadowing of the fragmentation that will happen to the rest of Florida if we don’t invest more seriously in land conservation. Please tune in this evening or listen online through the link and in my bio. @fl_wildcorridor#KeepFLWild
05.02.2019 22:30:39
Remembering Bali (3 photos) - flashback to a dozen years ago, when in an effort
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Remembering Bali (3 photos) - flashback to a dozen years ago, when in an effort to isolate myself to finish writing my master’s thesis on Conservation Photography, the logical decision was to go to Nusa Lembongan, a small island off the coast of Bali. I lived in a small hut where I spent 6 hours a day writing. I also managed to surf one tide or go shoot photos for a couple hours most days. The first photo is my good friend Hassan, who came to visit for a week, scoring some tube time at a break called Playgrounds. The other photos are local surfers there and at a break called Shipwrecks. While Florida doesn’t have reef breaks quite like these, I am feeling inspired to dust off my surfboards and spend some more time in the water this year. #bali#surf
03.02.2019 14:11:03
Oysters provide numerous environmental benefits. As filter feeders they clean th
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Oysters provide numerous environmental benefits. As filter feeders they clean the water. As reefs, they help buffer coastlines from storms and maintain estuaries by slowing the release is freshwater. At the mouth of the Suwannee River, scientists and local fishermen have worked together to complete the Lone Cabbage Reef project, laying rock and shell substrate to rebuild oyster reefs where they were historically located. Flying above the site during Abdullah moon low tide, it is easy to see how the new reefs are protecting the coast from storms and sea level rise while holding back freshwater from the Gulf of Mexico to improve growing conditions for oysters and overall balance of the ecosystem. In the second photo, Dr. Peter Frederick from the University of Florida and his team are measuring the progress of their work. #Suwannee#estuary#gulfofmexico#restoration#floridawild#keepflwild
30.01.2019 12:37:41
The Suwannee River Delta is one of my favorite places on earth. Which photo do y
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The Suwannee River Delta is one of my favorite places on earth. Which photo do you like best? I shot these last weekend on a flight with @hyper.heli. A few miles north of Cedar Key and 90 miles north of Tampa, the fabled Suwannee River spreads it’s freshwater branches into the Gulf of Mexico to form an estuary of national importance. The Suwannee flows 240 miles from its headwaters in the Okefenokee Swamp of southern Georgia. With a Okefenokee and Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuges protecting each end, the river is a vital link in the Florida Wildlife Corridor. Keeping the watershed clean is essential for the clam and oyster fisheries in the estuary downstream. The region is a great reminder for how all of Florida’s lands and waters are interconnected. #FloridaWild#KeepFLWild@insidenatgeo@natgeo@natgeoimagecollection
26.01.2019 13:13:59
Traversing the salt marsh of Waccasassa Bay on Florida’s Gulf Coast between Crys
Traversing the salt marsh of Waccasassa Bay on Florida’s Gulf Coast between Crystal River and Cedar Key. Thanks to Dack and Hilary Patriarca (@hyper.heli@500agll) for the amazing tour of the #FloridaWildlifeCorridor with @garyknell and @kimlars9@insidenatgeo#FloridaWild#KeepFLWild
21.01.2019 14:35:31
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