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July 12, 2013


Photo: An ornate day gecko laps nectar from tree blossoms on Mauritus.
An ornate day gecko laps nectar from tree blossoms on Mauritus.
Mark Moffett

Lemurs, Geckos And Other Pollinators

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Mark Moffett, a biologist and a photographer, has made a career out of studying insects around the world – and documenting them. So a few years ago, when he set out looking for animals and insects that carry pollen from one plant to the next, he traveled to Central Asia, Eastern Africa and Northern Minnesota.

The results are surprising images in National Geographic Magazine of unexpected pollinators caught in the act: an ornate day gecko lapping nectar from a tree blossom, a ring-tailed lemur gnawing on a cactus or a mosquito dipping into an orchid.

In this conversation with host Dick Gordon, Moffett explains how he found his photography subjects, how many hours he waited, and how many bug bites he got in the process.

"For most of journalism, we’re expected to dig deeper, to show the key moments in the life of a person," Moffett says. "It’s really no different for animal behavior. If you can find these moments, then you really have something to show."


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