Michael was born in Vancouver BC where a casual interest in a curious-looking bird common in the family yard ignited his passion for birds and the natural world. Forty years later the Crested Myna has vanished from the scene, but his love for birds and birding has not. After finishing high school, Michael spent 11 years working in the Federal Government before returning to school for a degree in Geography from UBC.
A pelagic trip off Westport, Washington in 1974 was a birding epiphany, leaving him hopelessly addicted to seabirds. In the last 18 years he has spent more than 3000 days at sea on various US and Canadian government research vessels, conducting seabird and marine mammal surveys in the Pacific, Indian and southern oceans. An added benefit of working at sea is being able to go birding in exotic ports of call in Middle and South America, Africa and on many remote oceanic islands.
Michael’s favourite birds are, not surprisingly, seabirds, with Snow Petrel barely edging out Wandering Albatross for the top spot.