Shark Fin Scoop Part I

Andy with a nervous smile before heading out to set the lines

This is the story of Andy, a 16 year old shark fisherman in the little known archipelago of the Louisiades, south east off the coast of mainland Papua New Guinea.  The youngest son of seven children it is time for this boy to earn his rights to be called a man and catch his first shark [...]

Sea turtles: gentle, ancient travellers

Hawksbill Turtle, Egypt. (Erich Reboucas)

The ponderous sea turtle has a good reason not to hurry. Turtles are prehistoric animals whose ancestors evolved on land before returning to the ocean some 150 million years ago – having survived the extinction of dinosaurs, why rush? Today, sea turtles are swimming slowly and gracefully in almost every ocean basin throughout the world [...]

TNC Arnavon Island project and the Women of Kia

Baby turtles hatching!

Of all the things that distinguish a traveller from a tourist perhaps the most denoting is the idea of a destination. For the traveller, is there such a thing? I’m consistently asked, Where are you going? How will you get around? What have you booked? I don’t know. It depends. I haven’t! Living like this [...]

Sex, surfing and saltwater crocodiles

Saltwater crocdile jaws have the crushing power of 3,000 pounds per square inch (PSI)

  I’d been sitting out the back with Chris, a local lad just learning to surf, when I felt that instinctive tightening of my gut and stillness of the mind. In the Solomon Islands it was saltwater crocodiles I was terrified of, not sharks. A shark, if it bites (the chance of an attack is [...]

A castle in the Solomon Islands

john at papatura

The Location: Papatura Island Retreat, Isabel Province It is close to dusk at the end of a 22-hour boat trip when I realise I’m not sure where I am. As the ship’s tender approaches a bay I spot a man in boardies, probably in his sixties, standing alone on the typically tropical beach. He gives [...]

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