If you have $6,000 to spare you might consider a trip to Yellowstone Park this winter. The World Wildlife Fund is offering a “Yellowstone Wolf and Photo Adventure” that will enable participants to observe and photograph wolves in their natural habitat–in the Lamar Valley of Yellowstone’s Northern Range.
“Through the relationships we’ve cultivated with local scientists, wolf researchers and renowned wildlife photographers, we are able to offer this exclusive photo safari for a few privileged guests keen for an intimate encounter with Canis lupus,” says the WWF. “If you’re looking for an epic Yellowstone wildlife photography adventure, this is it!”
The expedition will take place in the month of January, 2017. Highlights will include a scenic one-hour helicopter flight that will provide an aerial view of wolf habitats as well as a perspective on elk, bison, and moose migrations; and also a chance to meet local wildlife photographers and naturalists. Total cost: 6,095.
I guess it’s what you might refer to as ecological tourism. I’m glad there’s a market for it. If the Wolf Quest is a little beyond your budget, however, there is an alternative. Defenders of Wildlife is an organization that also works to protect wolves and other species in danger from encroachment by humans. And for a donation of just $35 or more, you can get a free wolf beach towel:
You can also visit their online store and find some great buys on t-shirts:
The World Wildlife Fund’s fundraising promotions seem geared more toward those with deep pockets, while Defenders of Wildlife would appear to appeal to those of more modest economic means. Yet both organizations have the same goal: protecting wild animals and preserving their natural habitats. It is ironic perhaps–that wildlife protection seems to be one of the few issues that the wealthy and powerful, and the meek and humble, can come together on.
The planet is plagued by wars, environmental pollution, poverty and economic disaster, radiation pouring into the open sea at Fukushima, polar ice cap melts, algae blooms and dead regions in the oceans, and more. And all of it, every bit of it, was caused by human greed. We all recognize this. We all recognize that the animals–the wolves, the caribou, the whales, dolphins, elephants, rhinos, herons, warblers, penguins, and the rest–had nothing to do with bringing any of this about.
I hope that in the coming war, or economic collapse, or whatever it is that’s coming down the pike now, that at least some of them will survive.