Life at sea: stunning photos from the marine conservation frontline

A green sea turtle hatchling that has successfully made the journey from the nest to open water. Photo: Alex Kydd

A green sea turtle hatchling that has successfully made the journey from the nest to open water. Photo: Alex Kydd

Marine biologist and nature photographer Alex Kydd has a mission – to show Australians just how beautiful nature can be, in the hope they’ll step up their conservation efforts.

“There are a lot of environments that are under major threats at the moment,” he says. “It is my goal to connect people with nature. People will protect what they love.”

Alex, who hails from Williamstown, has worked in the Southern Great Barrier Reef at Lady Elliot Island and Heron Island. Currently, he is based at Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia where he works daily with manta rays and sharks.

A self-taught photographer, Alex hopes his pictures inspire people to be more aware of the way their actions impact Australia’s marine environments.

“Conservation is important so that future generations can experience nature. With so much added pressure from humans, we may lose these beautiful ecosystems,” he says.

Turtles are one species which are gravely endangered by human impact along the Great Barrier Reef and other reefs around Australia.

“Simple choices like purchasing sustainable seafood, reducing the use of plastics and recycling effectively can help to sustain the survival of turtle populations,” Alex says.

1. Fish are friends, not food

Photo: Alex Kydd

A manta ray feeding in the sand, accompanied by juvenile golden trevally. Photo: Alex Kydd

2. Oh sharks!

Photo: Alex Kydd

A lemon shark swims in the shallows off Heron Island. Photo: Alex Kydd

3. Catching some rays

Photo: Alex Kydd

A green sea turtle over the beautiful reef of Heron Island, just after sunrise. Photo: Alex Kydd

4. Homeward bound

A green sea turtle making its way back to the water after a successful night of egg laying. She may return to lay a new clutch of eggs in two weeks, and may lay around five clutches over the season. Photo: Alex Kydd

A green sea turtle making its way back to the water after a successful night of egg laying. She may return to lay a new clutch of eggs in two weeks, and may lay around five clutches over the season. Photo: Alex Kydd

6. Hump day

A humpback whale mother and calf travelling along the Ningaloo Coast. This is an aerial photograph taken from a scenic flight from Coral Bay. Photo: Alex Kydd

A humpback whale mother and calf travelling along the Ningaloo Coast. This is an aerial photograph taken from a scenic flight from Coral Bay. Photo: Alex Kydd

7. Quite the handful

Researcher Nikki Daley with a handful of turtle hatchlings at Heron Island. Photo: Alex Kydd

Researcher Nikki Daley with some new turtle hatchlings at Heron Island. Photo: Alex Kydd

8. Whale of a time

A whale shark photographed on Ningaloo Reef just outside Coral Bay Western Australia. Photo: Alex Kydd

A whale shark photographed on Ningaloo Reef just outside Coral Bay Western Australia. Photo: Alex Kydd

9. Fever dreams

Swimming with a fever of whiptail stingrays, serenely unbothered by the close proximity of humans. Photo: Alex Kydd

Swimming with a fever of whiptail stingrays, serenely unbothered by the close proximity of humans. Photo: Alex Kydd

 

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