Where are you from and where have you lived?
I am from Worcestershire in the UK, and have lived in Staffordshire, Hertfordshire, and Norfolk in England and in the Stirling area of Scotland. Internationally, I have lived in Dunedin, New Zealand, and since 1998 in Hokkaido, Japan. Since April 2018 Mayumi (my wife) and I have lived in the Akan-Mashu National Park area of east Hokkaido.
Tell us about yourself—what path led you to becoming a Zegrahm Leader?
I have had careers in biological conservation, TV media (natural history), lecturing at a university (biodiversity, conservation, and ornithology), and have been writing scientific papers, popular nature articles for newspapers (for more than thirty years), and books. I was first approached by Zegrahm because of my books on the nature of Japan and asked to help initially with pre and post extensions in Hokkaido, then on ship trips, and then as an Expedition Leader for land trips.
What other jobs, positions or credentials do you have?
What other fields are you passionate about?
The outdoors, wildlife conservation, and science generally.
Any awards, publications, appearances documentaries etc. do you have?
No awards, but too many publications to mention, and I was involved in making many natural history documentaries.
What organizations are you a part of?
I support the Woodland Trust.
What excites you (or what do you enjoy) about working for Zegrahm?
Sharing the thrill of watching wildlife behavior with like-minded adventurous folk.
Can you tell us about a time that you were on an expedition that ended up taking an unexpected turn or made an unexpected discovery that took you off the planned trail?
An adventure in the Santa Marta Mountains of Colombia when the road was washed out and I had a convoy of vehicles with guests safely off the mountain.
Stumbling on a fossil of a dinosaur incubating a clutch of eggs in the Gobi Desert of Mongolia.
What non-for-profits or causes do you support or feel strongly about?
The Woodland Trust.
What are your top three countries or regions in the world to explore?
Antarctica, Russian Far East, and Japan.
What’s left on your explorer’s bucket list/where do you still want to go that you haven’t been yet? Why there?
New Guinea; Melanesia; the South Pacific Islands; the Seychelles; much of Australia; Madagascar; Bolivia; more of Colombia. Why? Because of the amazing wildlife to be found in all of those places.
What does being a part of the Zegrahm family mean to you?
You’ve said it: “family.” The people we work with in the field are not co-workers, they are our friends, our important colleagues, our support network; we look out for each other. So actually a lot tighter than many families!
Who is the Zegrahm Explorer/Traveler?
The inquiring, the inquisitive, the nature loving, flexible traveler with a sense of humour.