What You Can Do to Help Our Earth and Oceans. It isn’t hard, it just requires a little thought and some education. With our shut down due to Covid-19 we are seeing how quickly the planet can respond to the lack of hurtful human activities. If only we could take the lesson and do better when “normal” life starts back up! Here are some suggestions to help you begin the journey of combatting the harm that plastic and pollution does to our planet. The first thing you can do to help our earth and oceans is to reduce single-use plastics by reusing grocery bags, saying no to plastic utensils and carry a water bottle instead of drinking bottled water.[Read more…] about What You Can Do to Help Our Earth and Oceans
Tam’s Updated 9 Tips on How to Travel with Chronic Pain.
Update 2020: I published this blog in December 2017, and it is one of the most popular blogs on my site. Many of us, especially as we get older, experience pain and uncertainty. I just had a left hip replacement 5 weeks ago! I’ve been traveling the last couple of years with an increasingly bad and super painful hip in addition to my back problems, but I have managed, and let me tell you how!
Knowing how to travel with chronic pain is very important for me. When I began solo traveling and performing citizen science, after my children left home, one of my family’s major concerns was how I would manage my back pain while traveling solo. What would I do without help? I have had two major back surgeries, and I am fused from L2-S2 with rods and 8 pedicle screws. In other words, my spine looks like a madman’s science project! Heavy lifting is a major issue for me in all aspects, and since I do volunteer scuba diving trips, I make arrangements before I go to be sure it is understood I need assistance with the weight of the tank. In addition to my chronic back pain, I have Psoriatic Arthritis which flares up when it is most inconvenient. Plus, as I said above, the last few years I have been traveling with terrible left hip pain (I just had a hip replacement, thank goodness). I have learned about taking care of myself when I travel with chronic pain, which is bascially all the time, and I’m happy to share these lessons, and tell you what works for me. [Read more…] about Tam’s Updated 9 Tips on How to Travel with Chronic Pain
International Whale Shark Day!
My introduction to the ocean happened before I can remember, as did my connection to it. Since childhood, the ocean has retained its magic and constant fascination for me. I have been in thrall to it my entire life. Of course, that goes for the marine life that lives there as well. A day like Whale Shark Day is always a celebration of life.[Read more…] about Celebrate International Whale Shark Day and Learn How You Can Make a Difference
It is Giving Tuesday, everyone! Giving is a good thing! Generosity is always a positive. At this time in our history, I believe it is imperative to do something, whether it is for people, the environment, or our fellow creatures. These are all causes that need support, and are worthy of your generosity. Why not give to:
- Genesis Women’s Shelter, Dallas, Tx: Genesis is an important part of our fight against domestic violence, which still happens everywhere in the world. Genesis provides housing, training, and child care for those in need. Their Christmas program may be the only gifts these children, and mothers, receive. You can choose your family size by clicking on their website . Give a happy holiday to a family in need.
- REEF.org: REEF is an organization of divers and ocean enthusiasts who are dedicated to protecting our oceans. Ocean Conservation is one of the most important issues of our time. We need our oceans healthy and alive in order to breathe, eat, and live. I have donated and given time on one of their expeditions in St Lucia. REEF is a wonderful organization!
- Marine Megafauna Foundation: There are several ways to help Marine Megafauna save these giants for future generations! Become a Marine Guardian, Adopt something BIG, or become a Sponsor. You can also give back by participating in Citizen Science on their Ray of Hope Expeditions! I have done several of these trips and it benefits not only Ray of Hope, but one’s self!
- No matter your political affiliation, the separation of children from their parents is just plain wrong. There are still separated families and frightened children without their parents. You can give to www.rescue.org to help reunite families. What better gift to a child than to be reunited with her/his parents?
- I met Paul North of Meet the Ocean in Antarctica! Paul’s non-profit is educating the public on the importance of the saltwaters of our planet. Employing science, storytelling, and encounters from earth’s most remote locations, MTO combats environmental apathy and further understanding of how the ocean functions, in order to better protect it. Giving to Meet the Ocean helps educate kids!
There are so many organizations out there worthy of your time and money! What organizations do you routinely give to? Please leave a comment and tell us what charities you support!
Here is your chance to experience gray whales and whale sharks and other awesome wildlife!
Experience two of the Earth’s most charismatic marine species, gray whales, and whale sharks. From the majestic setting of RED’s gray whale eco camp in Magdalena Bay, you will observe up close the magnificent gray whales that come to these protected waters to mate and calve. Magdalena Bay is home to a staggering number of marine mammals, aviary species, lush mangrove canals and towering sand dunes. Across the narrow peninsula on the Gulf of California, named the “world’s aquarium” by Jacques Cousteau, you’ll visit Espíritu Santo island, teeming with sea life and home to resident sea lions that you can observe up close from the water. You’ll also have the chance to snorkel with the mystical whale sharks, the gentle giants that gather just outside the Bay of La Paz. You will experience regional cuisine with gourmet flair, and You’ll be accompanied along the way by expert naturalist guides that will give you a local’s eye into the region’s culture and natural history.
Day 1 – Arrival and Transfer to La Paz
Your driver will be waiting for you at Los Cabos International Airport to take you on the scenic drive from San Jose del Cabo to your hotel in La Paz (2.5 hours). RED staff AND TAM FROM TRAVELS WITH TAM, will be waiting to assist with your hotel check-in and to answer any questions you might have. You will meet the rest of your group and your naturalist guide at dinner, and receive a signed copy of ALL FISH FACES by Tam Warner Minton. Rest up for tomorrow because your adventure begins!
Meals included today: Dinner
Lodging: Hotel Catedral
Day 2 – Whale Sharks and Hidden Beaches of Balandra Bay
Your driver will pick you up at your hotel early in the morning and transport you to the marina to try on your snorkeling gear and wetsuit. We will then head out on the water for the short trip to the whale shark observation zone. On the way out of the bay, your guide will brief you on whale shark ecology and regulations for snorkeling. You’ll have the chance to get in the water accompanied by your guide to snorkel alongside these marvelous creatures. During peak holidays when observation activity increases, we will explore the surrounding area by boat as we wait for our turn to see these incredible animals.
The trip continues to Balandra Bay, a natural protected area and home to pristine beaches, mangroves, and stunning scenery. Here we’ll have a tasty lunch (dietary restrictions taken into account), explore the nature trails, snorkel in the crystal water and relax and unwind before heading back to La Paz.
La Paz is unique as a whale shark destination for its proximity to the observation zone and efforts undertaken by tour operators, regulatory agencies and civil society to responsibly manage this extraordinary experience. During peak holidays when boat activity increases, we may flip the itinerary and explore Balandra Bay and the surrounding area before entering into the whale shark observation zone.
Meals included today: Breakfast, Lunch
Lodging: Hotel Catedral
Day 3 – La Paz to Magdalena Bay
Depart from La Paz early in the morning en route to Magdalena Bay, jewel of the Pacific and home to a staggering number of migratory and marine birds, sea turtles, and marine mammals including the migratory gray whales. We will stop at one of our favorite local ranchos for a snack and a hearty cup of cowboy coffee. Arriving to Magdalena Bay we will head out on the water for the short trip to our secluded island camp, searching for whales along the way. After happy hour, chat with your guide to learn about the natural history of the region.
Day 4 – Gray Whale Observation and Exploration of Magdalena Bay
After a good night’s rest wake up and enjoy a delicious breakfast at camp. Wake up early to watch the fishermen conservationists prepare their sea turtle monitoring nets. Today we will learn more about the gray whales, their incredible migration, and the importance of Magdalena Bay for breeding and calving to these magnificent creatures. We will head out in pangas (outboard skiffs) to look for gray whales. Friendly whales often approach the boats, and the mothers are known to push the young calves closer, which can make for an incredible interaction between two species.
Meals included today: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Lodging: RED Basecamp
Day 5 – Gray whales, Magdalena to La Paz
In the morning wake up to take in the spectacular sunrise one more time. After breakfast we will bid farewell to our hosts and head out in the search for whales. Make sure your camera is handy to capture images of these magnificent giants. After a picnic lunch on a secluded barrier island, we start back for La Paz where the journey concludes. B/L
Meals included today: Breakfast, Lunch
Lodging: Hotel Catedral
Day 6 – Espíritu Santo Island
After breakfast we will head to RED´s office for the boat ride to
and a natural paradise that will amaze you with breathtaking island scenery and rich marine life. Jump in the water to snorkel with the sea lions and observe tropical fish. Afterwards, your captain will seek out a secluded beach for a tasty lunch and time to relax or explore this unique place before heading back to La Paz in time for dinner.
Meals included today: Breakfast, Lunch
Lodging: Hotel Catedral
Day 7 –Departure
After breakfast, your driver will be waiting outside the hotel lobby to transport you to the Los Cabos International Airport.
Meals included today: Breakfast
Cost per person $2,200.00 and Includes: round trip ground transportation between SJD airport and La Paz; round trip ground transportation between RED camp and La Paz; all meals and beverages as specified in itinerary; bilingual naturalist guide with WFR certification; double occupancy lodging in hotel (La Paz) and RED tent camp; 3 whale watching excursions; all park entrance fees; whale shark and Espíritu Santo activities as described in the itinerary; snorkeling equipment and wetsuits; all taxes. This is a custom trip designed by Red Travel Mexico and Travels with Tam.
Please contact me at email@example.com if interested!
WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?
Excludes: airline flights and any transportation not described in the itinerary; any meals and activities not described in the itinerary; gratuities.
Notes on itinerary: We make all efforts to adhere to the itinerary described above, but we may modify the itinerary due to wind, weather, and other factors. The safety and enjoyment of our travelers are our top priorities. Please see our terms and conditions for more information. We do not guarantee wildlife sightings, interaction or behavior. All travelers must comply with communicated protocols and regulations regarding activities within natural protected areas and interactions with wildlife.
It is World Oceans Day 2018! Are you tired of hearing that our oceans are in crisis? Too bad, because it is true. Did you know our oceans are 30% more acidic than they were 100 years ago? Did you know that 4 out of the 5 mass extinctions on earth took place when oceans became too acidic? Did you know that they recently found microplastic in organisms in Antarctica??? Our oceans are paramount to our very lives. We have to start caring about it, or we will destroy ourselves.
Let’s all replace plastic with biodegradables. Please check out this link to Amazon’s biodegradable straws! Remember, we all need to #startwith1thing. What 1 thing will you start with???? For switching to biodegradable makeup and sunscreens go to SHOP BEAUTIFUL YOU.
Check out this article from The Center for Biological Diversity. Here are the facts:
- Fish in the North Pacific ingest 12,000 to 24,000 tons of plastic each year, which can cause intestinal injury and death and transfers plastic up the food chain to bigger fish and marine mammals.
- Sea turtles also mistake floating plastic garbage for food. While plastic bags are the most commonly ingested item, loggerhead sea turtles have been found with soft plastic, ropes, Styrofoam, and monofilament lines in their stomachs. Ingestion of plastic can lead to blockage in the gut, ulceration, internal perforation and death; even if their organs remain intact, turtles may suffer from false sensations of satiation and slow or halt reproduction.
- Hundreds of thousands of seabirds ingest plastic every year. Plastic ingestion reduces the storage volume of the stomach, causing birds to consume less food and ultimately starve. Nearly all Laysan albatross chicks — 97.5 percent — have plastic pieces in their stomachs; their parents feed them plastic particles mistaken for food. Based on the amount of plastic found in seabird stomachs, the amount of garbage in our oceans has rapidly increased in the past 40 years.
- Marine mammals ingest and get tangled in plastic. Large amounts of plastic debris have been found in the habitat of endangered Hawaiian monk seals, including in areas that serve as pup nurseries. Entanglement deaths are severely undermining recovery efforts of this seal, which is already on the brink of extinction. Entanglement in plastic debris has also led to injury and mortality in the endangered Steller sea lion, with packing bands the most common entangling material. In 2008 two sperm whales were found stranded along the California coast with large amounts of fishing net scraps, rope and other plastic debris in their stomachs.