James Holland, who formerly served with distinction as the Altamaha Riverkeeper and is now a citizen advocate for coastal environmental protection, is renowned for his remarkable photography. As Altamaha Riverkeeper, he used his touch with a camera to document examples of environmental abuse and raise public awareness regarding the myriad of threats to the east coast’s largest free-flowing river and its remarkable watershed. He also highlighted the need to preserve and protect the Altamaha through awesome photos of this vast watershed and the wildlife that populates it.
Click here, for a sampling of James’ stunning nature photos, some of which were taken on Jekyll Island. Click here for one of our favorites - - a series of remarkable photos of a mother Red-winged black bird at meal time with her fledgling. For an outstanding collection of James’ captivating nature photography, check out the recently published book, Altamaha: A River and Its Keeper. Below is a brief excerpt from the book:
“Formed by the confluence of the Ocmulgee and Oconee Rivers, the Altamaha is the largest free-flowing river on the East Coast and drains its third-largest watershed. It has been designated as one of the Nature Conservancy’s seventy-five Last Great Places because of its unique character and rich natural diversity. In evocative photography and elegant prose, Altamaha captures the distinctive beauty of this river and offers a portrait of the man who has become its improbable guardian.
Few people know the Altamaha better than James Holland. Raised in Cochran, Georgia, Holland spent years on the river fishing, hunting, and working its coastal reaches as a commercial crabber. Witnessing a steady decline in blue crab stocks, Holland doggedly began to educate himself on the area’s environmental and political issues, reaching a deep conviction that the only way to preserve the way of life he loved was to protect the river and its watershed. In 1999, he began serving as the first Altamaha Riverkeeper, finding new purpose in protecting the river and raising awareness about its plight with people in his community and beyond.
At first Holland used photography to document pollution and abuse, but as he came to appreciate and understand the Altamaha in new ways, his photographs evolved, focusing more on the natural beauty he fought to save. More than 230 color photographs capture the area’s majestic landscapes and stunning natural diversity, including a generous selection of some the 234 species of rare plants and animals in the region. In their [introductory] essays, Janisse Ray offers a profile of Holland’s transformation from orphan and troubled high school dropout to river advocate, and Dorinda G. Dallmeyer celebrates the biological richness and cultural heritage that the Altamaha offers to all Georgians.”