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WiLDiMAGES - Andy Young Photography

I am an evolutionary biologist seeking to capture something of the world.

My research frequently takes me to Africa's wild places, but much of my photography involves hunting for peculiar mammals on other continents. I have a particular interest in camera trapping and noctural photography. My two primary subjects are Humans and The Wild.

Follow me @animalsocieties

Giant Oceanic Manta Rays, Costa Rica

We rounded off the trip with a couple of days of diving around Isla de Cano, from palm-strewn Drake bay. On the second day conditions were right to head out to bajo del diablo - a set of pinnacles set away from the island that can attract big pelagics in the passing currents.

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We dropped in to stunning vis and the rocks were thick with life as cool water mingled with warm in a jumble of thermoclines. After about ten minutes the hoped for beasts loomed hulkingly out of the blue like alien craft scanning for life.

Of staggering size and with striking markings they were by far the biggest I’ve seen. The frame above, taken from video, gives a feel for their scale - at least five metres across the wings. Feeding in the currents and intrigued by our presence, three or four intermittently circled us throughout our two dives. A jaw dropping spectacle and fitting climax to a wonderful trip.


Glass frogs & other wonders...

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A fantastic night walk spotlighting with Esteban in Bahia de Drake yielded some amazing frogs - reticulated and amarillo glass frogs the most striking among them.

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Tapir in Corcovado

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Famed for its potential for tapir sightings, it was Corcovado on the Osa peninsula that drew us to Costa Rica in the first place. After three days searching every wallow and trail around the Sirena ranger station, deep in the park, it was with real elation that we finally encountered one. He was out on the trail and very relaxed, nosing and nibbling fallen fruit. We followed him quietly along a track for about a hundred metres between patches attracting no reaction at all. For such a massive animal he moved silently in the forest and let us approach very closely. A wonderful sighting.

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Olingo in Monteverde

One of our targets in the Monteverde cloud forest (apart from mountains of baked goods) was an elusive relative of the racoons - the bushy-tailed olingo. We had heard there was a good chance late at night at the hummingbird feeders outside the park entrance. After three hours in broken rain on the first night we abandoned our vigil - some stunning hummers and great bats had sustained the motivation! Then just as we were packing up after another three hours the next night we heard a rustle in the bushes, and sure enough there it was - in the space of about 10 seconds it zipped down from a tree, drained what was left of the feeders and was off in to the darkness. We wandered home down the muddy track, grinning from ear to ear. We also managed to pin down some lovely birds in the area, including quetzals, three-wattled bell birds and long-tailed manakins. Lovely spot - and with a great bakery - what more could you want?

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Honduran white bats!

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These stunning little puff-ball bats, that roost communally under palm leaves, were one of the most hoped for mammals of the trip. So we were stoked to see them up close, while joining local researchers mist netting in the forest. The evening turned out to be one of our best, also yielding kinkajou, mexican porcupine, Northern racoon and our first Hoffmann’s two-toed sloth.

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Texas longhorn burgers & cherry pie

Hopping over the border from Texas to Oklahoma, we spent a day in Wichita Mountains state park watching buffalo and prairie dogs among the spring flowers. We stopped in at Meers’ famous Longhorn burger joint for a seriously tasty lunch, which culminated in the highlight of the day - an immense cherry pie with ice cream. More shots from the trip can be found here.

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Northern Right Whales, Cape Cod

We headed up the coast to Cape cod for some great food and whale-watching from Provincetown. There were good numbers of Northern right whales in the bay - possibly around a quarter of the world’s population. While still a little early for the summer influx of humpbacks, we did cross paths with a few, and a handful of fin whales. Some fine ice cream and taste-bud-meltingly-good clam chowder rounded off a great stay... More here.

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Empire State of Mind, New York City

Spent a wonderful few days in New York, soaking up the richness of the streets. The resulting skyscraper and street photography can be found here.

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Aliwal shoal, Kwazulu Natal

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Headed to Aliwal Shoal off the KwaZulu Natal coast with Jim, hoping for a close encounter with a tiger shark. A whirl of black-tips and silkies brought wide smiles, and the recharging strobes drew inquisitive bumps from the bolder among them. As we dropped into the whirl for a second time, a broad icicle-striped torpedo cruised slowly through the blue, silenced our bubbles and was gone. Magic.

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