Solastalgia: the distress caused by environmental upheaval

The Don Quixote of Fish Biologists’ quest to avert ecological calamity brought on by Homo sapiens (a.k.a. “the wise ones”)

This is a story about an unknown and unassuming fish biologist living in the middle of nowhere living a life no different then Dr. Joel Fleischman of the Emmy winning show Northern Exposure of years gone by.  This biologist is perversely driven to make a difference by reaching the masses in a way that gets the individual to fully contemplate their place in the environment and never see themselves or the environment the same way again.

Ultimately, it’s a story about the need for the human race to “get in charge of itself psychologically” in order to avert unimaginable widespread ecological and social disruption. 

I Need Help

  • I’m not a screenwriter or a director, but have an entertaining, funny, and quirky story to tell that I believe humanity would benefit from hearing.
  • However, I need a talented screenwriter to help me craft a compelling and effective narrative that piques the interest of an environmentally conscious producer and/or director…or more realistically, a billionaire environmentalist like Tom Steyer.
  • James Joyce wrote, “In the particular is contained the universal”.  I invite you to spend a week with me in “bush” Alaska to find out the particulars of this endeavor, and if you take me up on the offer – I guarantee that you’ll agree with the sense of urgency and potentiality for a possible game changing film.
Please watch this clip for a synopsis of what I envision:

Project History

The Big Picture

“If the structures of the human mind remain unchanged, we will always end up re-creating the same world, the same evils, the same dysfunction.” (Eckhart Tolle)

The Only Thing That Will Make A Difference Is Something Different!

How did we get to this point? Read about the process that has led me to believing that an effective movie or TV show is probably the only way to convey my urgent message.

My Many Failed Attempts To Find Help

I’ve included here many of the letters I’ve written, or videos I’ve made, with the hope of enticing someone talented to help me get this big-picture, paradigm-shifting message out to the masses.

Dave Who?

Dave Cannon lives and works in Aniak, Alaska. A photographer, blogger, and activist, Dave is a fish biologist with decades of observation of the natural world and a compelling story to tell.

Welcome to this site about a special part of Alaska and my efforts to get a game-changing environmental message out to the masses.  This site originally started with just my photographs from around the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta Region, but has now morphed into mostly getting that all-important environmental message out.

I’m hoping that you’ll have an enjoyable experience as you navigate through it.  As time goes on, I’ll add more pictures, videos, and environmental-minded blog posts with potential cynical and irreverent rantings from a fish’s perspective, a fish by the name of Cyprinid Cynicalis.

I have a degree in Surveying Technology from Penn State and Fisheries and Wildlife Conservation and Management from the University of Wyoming. I worked on the Bridger-Teton National Forest in Northwestern Wyoming and the Nez Perce National Forest in Central Idaho prior to moving to Bethel, AK in 1998. As a fish biologist at the Jackson National Fish Hatchery in Jackson Hole, WY, I regularly scraped fish feces from the raceways in the shadow of the Tetons and Sleeping Indian Mountain of the Gros Ventre Range while the elk frolicked in my front yard – the National Elk Refuge. I spent four years in Bethel as the first fish biologist that the Yukon Delta National Wildlife Refuge ever had; that refuge is approximately the size of S. Carolina. Following that I was the first fish biologist that the Kuskokwim Native Association in Aniak ever had. And I guess I’m the first professional photographer to live in Aniak.

More recently I served as the Invasive Plant Coordinator for the Mid Yukon-Kuskokwim Region. Sadly, invasive plants are rapidly spreading even to remote sections of this pristine land.  I was also the Environmental Director for the Native Village of Napaimute, located 30 miles upriver of Aniak as well as the Solid Waste/Water Quality Coordinator for the now defunk Kuskokwim River Watershed Council.

Because of an abundance of relentless ecological stressors I had planned on writing a book about my concern for the environment…and had worked on that endeavor for over ten years!  However, after having that effort go no where, and giving it much thought, I realized that a book just won’t cut it these days; subsequently, there is the need for something that is highly informative yet can reach the masses in an entertaining way.  Hence, the need for a full-length feature film.  (Please click on the Game-Changing Movie tab for more information)

In an effort to get my all-important environmental message out, I’ve had three articles in Best Self Magazine, a digital publication with a focus on “inspiration for authentic living”, titled A Fish Story: One Biologist’s Call To Environmental Action, The Environmental Cookie Thief: Our Environmental Liability, and Mother Nature’s Hourglass: A Biologist Reminds Us That Time Is Running Out.

I enjoy fishing, boating, camping and photography or basically being outdoors as much as I can. The subtle beauty that abounds here in Southwestern Alaska simply enthralls me.

As a photographer, one of the harshest lessons I’ve learned is that you can’t get em all! That’s in regards to striking sunrises, sunsets and moonrises. Another lesson is that photography is like those never got-to things in life; the photos you remember most are the ones you wished you’d taken but never did.

Hopefully some of my pictures will give you the inspiration to go out and not miss that one you wished you’d taken and the environmental posts will get you never seeing nature and your place in the environment the same way ever again.

My photos have appeared in publications by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, the Alaska Department of Fish & Game, the American Fisheries Society, Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim Sustainable Salmon Initiative, Army Corps of Engineers, The Anchorage Daily News, The Delta Discovery, The Tundra Drums, Younglife Relationships, and the Nestle Purina Pet Care Company.