Living on Lord Howe Island is like living inside a David Attenborough documentary
For me, living on Lord Howe Island is like living inside a David Attenborough documentary. Outside my front door is the Island rainforest – alive with the calls of rare endemic birds. A 30-minute walk through the palm forest and into the hills takes me to 200 metre high cliffs, and from there I can see many of the Island’s 14 seabird species, which breed in tens of thousands every year. The Island’s mountain summits are slightly less accessible, but where else on such a short trek, could one enter a mysterious “coal age” mist forest, clad with mosses, ferns and ancient flowering plants, most of which are totally restricted to that environment. Alternatively, if the mood takes me, I can motor out in my dinghy to the Island’s coral reef (in less than five minutes) and snorkel over a dazzling realm of colourful corals and fish, whose myriad variety stuns the senses. I feel very fortunate, and indeed deeply grateful, that I’ve had the opportunity to live on Lord Howe Island for most of the past thirty years.
I grew up in Sydney with boy scouts, so early on developed a love of the outdoors and nature. Photography became a hobby in my teens and has carried through to the present, starting with an old Edixa 35mm camera, on to NIKON cameras in the 1980’s and using black and white, colour print and colour slide mediums. In 2000 I ventured early into digital photography with a NIKON Coolpix 4500, and have progressed through various upgrades as technology advanced.
I completed a biology degree in 1980 and moved to Lord Howe Island the same year. While working as a weather Observer with the Bureau of Meteorology I was able to live on the island and explore all of the diverse habitats. To share the amazing things I observed on the island I began holding regular slide lectures at the island museum, and then taking tourists on seashore and rainforest walks. I became the first person to be licensed to take Botanical guided walks to Mount Gower and low tide reef walks on the seashore. With my local knowledge across the island I have worked with scientists from many fields, and have contributed to some 60 papers and articles. I have also been employed as a location guide for film documentary projects including Chanel 7 Australia, BBC England, NHK Japan and ZDF Germany. Through my observations, research and photography I have been able to produce ten books on the island, including five pocket guides to the flora and fauna.
I still love to share my passion for the island and its environment; and all of my ongoing interests … research, photography, exploring, tie in to offer a unique guiding experience for visitors who come to the island and want to know more.
When you are visiting Lord Howe Island, I am available for private guided tours, to take you to the best places for your interests and agility to get the most from a day or half day tour. Book ahead to ensure availability.