I’m still building out this new portfolio website and blog, and have some other writing projects in the works on Alaska’s Tongass National Forest, Interstate 90 wildlife crossings, freediving for delicious invertebrates, hunting invasive species in Hawaii, and more.
Until then, here’s a recent work project: This Land Is Part of Us: Washington’s shrub-steppe ecosystem, a 12-minute video by filmmakers Ted Grudowski and Darrin Gunkel and produced by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and Conservation Northwest (yours truly). There’s a few of my shots in there, and plenty of central Washington drone footage I worked with an aerial photographer to procure over nearly two years (that’s my truck and I sneaking into a number of the scenes).
The shrub-steppe of central Washington’s Columbia Basin is a land of rich biodiversity, vibrant communities and poignant beauty. It is a place both iconic and increasingly at-risk.
Here, at the northern extent of the great “Sagebrush Sea” that once sprawled across much of the American West, growing collaboration between agencies, Native American tribes, conservation organizations, local landowners and other partners seeks to preserve and restore shrub-steppe ecosystems while supporting cultural and economic values.
Despite impacts from severe wildfires and habitat fragmentation, recovery programs are underway for species such as sage-grouse, pygmy rabbits, sharp-tailed grouse and pronghorn antelope, while efforts including the Arid Lands Initiative and Conservation Reserve Program foster constructive partnership for the future of Washington’s shrub-steppe.
For wildlife lovers, hunters and anglers, Indigenous peoples, farmers and ranchers, outdoor recreationists and so many others, this land is no desert devoid of life, This Land is Part of Us.
That’s video description copy I wrote. Learn more about this short film and ways to support central Washington’s increasingly fragmented and burned-up shrub-steppe on this Conservation Northwest webpage or on this new WDFW webpage.