Every year from February to March an important event takes place in Wapusk National Park in Manitoba – Canada. Polar bears who entered maternity dens in October and gave birth in November are ready to exit for the first time with their four-month-old cubs. The timing coincides with seals giving birth to their pups on the Hudson Bay pack ice, which means easy food for the polar bears. It is extremely rare to witness the exit of the bears from their dens and one has to face incredibly challenging conditions with temperatures dropping to -54 degrees Celsius and winds gusting up to 60 km/h. All the efforts are however well rewarded when you get to experience such intimacy with the most iconic animal of the Arctic kingdom.
Daisy Gilardini is originally from Switzerland but now lives in Vancouver – Canada. She started taking photography seriously during her first trip to India in 1989 and since then has visited more than 70 countries with camera in hand. She fell in love with Antarctica during her first trip there in 1996 and since then has spent most of her time photographing the Polar Regions. In almost two decades of polar explorations she joined over fifty expeditions to Antarctica and the Arctic, most of them on research vessels and icebreakers, one on a sailing boat, some overland and in 2006 she joined a Russian expedition to the North Pole on skies. Daisy’s images have been published internationally by leading magazines and organizations, such as National Geographic, Smithsonian, BBC Wildlife, Nature’s Best, Audubon, The Telegraph, Outdoor Photography, Greenpeace, World Wildlife Fund, among many others. Her work has received awards at the most prestigious international photo contests such as the “IPA International Photography Award”, “BBC Wildlife photographer of the year”, “Photography Master Award”, “Travel Photography of the Year” and “Nature’s Best”. In April 2010 Daisy had the great honor to be part of the jury of the “BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year” considered as the “Oscars” of nature photography photo contests. Her passion for the natural world has grown into a lifelong commitment to disseminate conservation messages and inspire others to respect and preserve our fragile planet. For her dedication in environmental issues, in fall 2009, Daisy has been accepted as a member of the League of iLCP the International League of Conservation Photographers. In fall 2010 she has been accepted as a fellow at the prestigious “The Explorer Club” - an honor reserved for those who have distinguished themselves by directly contributing to scientific knowledge in the field of geographical exploration or allied sciences. Daisy is also member of the Swiss Nikon Ambassador’s team, the SanDisk Extreme Team and the Canadian Loweprofessional Team. To find out more about Daisy : www.daisygilardini.com