Lightning flashes over Ayers Rock, a landmark red sandstone monolith that draws tourists to Australia's center. The remote Kimberley region in Western Australia features dramatic landscapes filled with river gorges and sandstone formations that were featured in the 2008 film Australia. The sky stretches far and wide above cowgirls—or jillaroos—on a cattle ranch in Queensland.
Eight towering limestone monoliths make up the Twelve Apostles that sit on Great Ocean Road in southeastern Australia.
The Sydney Opera House is an iconic image of Australia’s largest city and provides multiple venues for different types of entertainment.
The world-famous Melbourne Cricket Ground was built in 1853 after the Australian government forced the 15-year-old Melbourne Cricket Club to move locations. Australian surf lifesaving clubs were formed in the early 20th century in an effort to help save swimmers who get caught in the sometimes treacherous surf.
King penguins crowd Macquarie Island, which is halfway between Australia and Antarctica and home to thousands of migratory seabirds and elephant seals. The Remarkable Rocks, a series of weather-sculpted boulders that perch on a granite dome above the sea, draw visitors to Flinders Chase National Park on south Australia's Kangaroo Island. Crystal Shower Falls is just one natural attraction in New South Wales's Dorrigo National Park. The threatened Australian sea lion is found only in the Great Australian Bight, which arcs around the southern shore of the continent. The smooth, sandy shorelines of Australia’s Whitsunday Islands and the natural wonder of the surrounding Great Barrier Reef draw tourists from around the world.
Based at the University of Michigan, the Undocumented Migration Project (UMP) is a long-term anthropological study of undocumented migration between Mexico and the United States that uses ethnography, archaeology, and forensic science to better understand this clandestine social process. We've launched an all-new version of Coloribus.It's a brand new set of tools for the perfect workflow. Ami is touring the United States as one of the featured National Geographic photographers of the National Geographic Live series. Skillshare came with me to Venice Beach, California, to share tools and practices of documentary photography for a class you can take online.
Kilifi is an 18-month-old rhino that Kamara is currently hand-raising along with three other baby rhinos at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in Kenya. Just in time for World Oceans Day (June 8), Tourism and Events Queensland and Catlin Seaview Survey are holding the first ever live broadcast from underwater on the Great Barrier Reef.
Marine biologist and documentary filmmaker Richard Fitzpatrick will lead the effort, supported by a rotating panel of experts from around the world. Fitzpatrick is known for his Emmy-award winning cinematography for the National Geographic series Great Migrations and for the BBC series Great Barrier Reef. Other participating experts include Professor Jamie Seymour from James Cook University’s Reef Research Unit and Dave Wachenfeld from the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority. National Geographic VoicesResearchers, conservationists, and others around the world share stories and commentary on the National Geographic Society's conversation platform Voices. Society Field Inspection 2016: Gulf of CaliforniaDescribed by Jacques Cousteau as the "aquarium of the world," the Gulf of California in Mexico is threatened by coastal development, climate change, and other human activities.
Support National GeographicWe've supported more than 11,000 grants to scientists and others in the field.Learn more about our work.
Two years after being discovered deep in a South African cave, the 1,500 fossils excavated during the Rising Star Expedition have been identified as belonging to a previously unknown early human relative that National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Lee Berger and team have named Homo naledi. With at least 15 individuals of all ages and both sexes represented, the find adds an unprecedented amount of information to our understanding of early human evolution in Africa. In addition, the absence of any other animal remains or large debris in the fossil chamber strongly suggests that these non-human beings intentionally deposited their dead within this cave.
BANABA ISLAND, Kiribati—Asbestos dust covers the floors of Banaba’s crumbling colonial houses, buildings, and schools.

The Arctic Ocean's sea ice is in a "death spiral" due to rising temperatures, scientists said in 2008.
Polar bears—like this one leaping between ice floes in Svalbard, Norway's Hinlopen Strait—live on the Arctic ice, hunting seals and other fatty marine mammals.
Permafrost—the frozen soil that forms the backbone of the Arctic tundra—is melting due to climbing global temperatures.
Thermokarst failures occur when permafrost—a layer of frozen soil in Earth's polar regions—thaws and becomes unstable, possibly releasing greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
Freezing water from beneath Earth's surface forces the ground upward in Canada's Mackenzie River delta.
Caribou—such as this large-antlered specimen silhouetted by Alaska's northern lights—are being affected as global warming accelerates in the Arctic. A forest of dead spruce trees near Homer, Alaska, is the victim of a tiny beetle that has boomed in the state's milder winters.
The Inuit, a group of indigenous people living in the Arctic, are finding their land and cultures rapidly changing as climate change deepens its grip.
The National Geographic Society aims to be an international leader for global conservation and environmental sustainability. Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park houses the rock, called Uluru by Aborigines, the continent's original inhabitants. The Kimberley is also home to the massive boab tree, close relative of the African baobabs. The original inhabitants of Australia, Aborigines were there for more than 40,000 years before white men arrived. These eastern Australian residents spend most of their time dozing in eucalyptus trees, waking up at night to feed on the trees' tough leaves.
A national symbol of Australia, the eastern grey kangaroo has been known to leap up to 29.5 feet (9 meters) in a single bound as it traverses eastern mainland Australia. The structures, once a part of the towering mainland cliffs, now sit about 80 feet (24 meters) high and 20 feet (6 meters) wide in the midst of crashing waves. Australia’s Gold Coast is a surfing paradise where grommets (Aussie slang for surfers) hang ten in the waves that flow into famous surfing beaches like the Spit, Surfers Paradise, and Mermaid Beach.
The distinctive roof of the opera house is created from interlocking “shells” that form a terraced platform where pedestrians can stroll in the Sydney sunshine. Today the site is the largest stadium in Australia and has played host to Pope John Paul II, the 1956 Summer Olympics, and musical acts like The Police. Victorian morality created the huts, situated close to the shoreline so women could slip into their bathing costumes and race to the water discretely. Today more than 300 surf lifesaving clubs help keep beaches safe and sponsor competitions and carnivals. The oceanic island is the exposed part of the undersea Macquarie Ridge, which is formed by the meeting of two tectonic plates. Boardwalks on the forest floor and the treetop level let visitors experience the rain forest up close. The mammal is distinguished by an unusual breeding cycle that occurs every 18 months and has pups suckle for a year and a half. Many of the 74 islands are designated national park land while others play host to luxurious island resorts. Together, we capture the sunrise over the ocean and meet the surfers and skaters enjoying the beach. Kamara spends 12 hours every day, sometimes in pouring rain, watching over the vulnerable baby rhinos. Loisaba is an important elephant corridor, with more than 800 elephants spending significant time there, and it plays a critical role in maintaining ecological connectivity between Laikipia and Samburu.

Tune in on Friday, June 7 at 10 am AEST (8 pm EST on Thursday, June 6) through 10 pm AEST local time (8 am EST on Friday, June 7). Included in that group is Costas Christ, a sustainable tourism expert and Nat Geo Traveler’s Editor at Large, who will be interviewed from his home in Maine. Posters and commenters are required to observe National Geographic's community rules and other terms of service. To learn firsthand what's going on in and around this marine treasure of global importance, the National Geographic Society sent its top scientists and officials to the region in January 2016. Many marine species, such as these narwhals swimming through a bay in Nunavut, Canada, depend on the ice throughout their life cycles. But as the ice vanishes, some experts predict this predator will also disappear from the Arctic by 2050. In Alaska, the mercury may rise by 1 to 5 degrees Celsius (1.8 to 9 degrees Fahrenheit) by 2100.
Though the features occur naturally in some parts of the Arctic, many scientists suspect that rising temperatures are causing more to form. Much of the basin is made up of permafrost, a layer of frozen soil in Earth's polar regions. In Greenland, caribou time their births to coincide with the blooming of tundra vegetation. Since the mid-1970s, about 50 percent, or 1 million acres (400,000 hectares), of the Kenai Peninsula's adult spruce trees have succumbed to the spruce bark beetle. But as temperatures rise, thicker, taller shrubs are spreading throughout the region, raising the likelihood for more fires in coming years.
As ice declines, so does the number of days available for Inuit to hunt for animals such as seals and walrus.
When individuals pledge to use less water in their own lives, our partners carry out restoration work in the Colorado River Basin. European settlers brought disease and politics to the continent, severely endangering the Aborigines’ distinct culture, language, and lifestyle. They toured the desert islands off the southeastern coast of the Baja Peninsula and they listened to presentations by more than a dozen experts, including several whose Baja California research is funded by the Society. In this false-color image of Alaska's North Slope, taken by NASA's Terra satellite, the blue-black color shows the many ponds of meltwater that collected on the coast in July 2007. Until 2003, thermokarsts—such as this one, located about 155 miles (about 250 kilometers) north of the Arctic Circle—were unheard of in northern Alaska. Loss of permafrost due to climate change in Canada's Northern Territories may increase runoff and sediment flowing into rivers and make some slopes more unstable and vulnerable to landslides.
But as climate change causes plants to peak earlier, caribou newborns that eat the plants face tougher odds for survival. The swaths of downed trees may actually turn forests from carbon sinks to sources, according to an April 2008 study.
Tundra burning may also release more organic carbon, a greenhouse gas currently stored in the soil, into the atmosphere.
Shifting winds are also reshaping ice formations used as landmarks for generations, making navigation more difficult. For instance, when dead trees decompose, they release the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. But, as Theo Ikummaq of Canada's Nunavut Province said, "We have lived in this region for centuries and we will continue to.

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