Hancock Wildlife Foundation would not exist without the hard work and dedication of our volunteers. Meet some of the people who help run the Foundation. If you would like to help out, check out our Volunteers pages for some ways you can be involved.
David Hancock has spent most of his life studying west coast and arctic wildlife. He has published scientific and popular books and papers on whales, seals, seabirds, grouse and his speciality, the northern raptors. David is a graduate of the University of British Columbia and has focused much effort following the bald eagle adaptations to the urban environment. Prior to starting Hancock House Publishers, he was a pilot and wildlife film producer – again specializing in the native cultures and wildlife of the coast and north. In 2006, he and fellow Director Dr. David Bird founded the Hancock Wildlife Foundation.
Today David is involved with various Bald Eagle projects, including his pioneering programs broadcasting live streaming web cameras to the general public and consulting on Bald Eagle mitigation programs, where he brings his ecological understanding of “Speaking for Eagles” to the business table. Presently, he is helping develop the Bald Eagle Tracking Alliance in the Fraser Valley – a project he spearheaded with the HWF. David has developed a monitoring database of over 400 pairs of nesting Bald Eagles in the Lower Fraser Valley that enables an understanding of competing eagle territories. David also sits as consulting biologist on numerous boards including the Harrison Salmon Stronghold and the Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival Committee.
Two of the present bald eagle nests in the lower Fraser Valley displayed on the Hancock Wildlife Foundation live streaming cam web site are nests he and the HWF supporters built from scratch.
David Hancock also authored the book: The Bald Eagle of Alaska, BC and Washington.
Myles Lamont is a wildlife biologist, zoologist and naturalist hailing from the west coast of British Columbia. He completed his Bachelor of Science at the University of the Fraser Valley majoring in biology and ecology, a past recipient of Wildlife Preservation Canada’s fellowship program, recipient of the International Wild Waterfowl Association’s outstanding service award and an active member in many wildlife organizations and NGO’s. Working professionally as both a wildlife biologist and a zoologist, he has a strong passion for wildlife conservation, reintroduction biology and the management of threatened species. He is a Registered Professional Biologist, Certified Wildlife Biologist, a registered Environmental Professional, Applied Science Technologist and a fellow of The Explorers Club. He has worked both internationally and domestically on wildlife conservation projects, from the high arctic and boreal Canada to the tropical forests of the Indian Ocean. He founded his own wildlife consulting company in 2012, working as an independent consulting biologist on various wildlife projects around Canada and abroad. He also worked for two years with the Government of Nunavut’s Department of Environment in Nunavut on various wildlife programs involving caribou, muskox and Arctic raptors. He is an avid outdoor enthusiast, photographer and fisherman.
Myles has been involved with the installation and development of raptor mitigation nests in the Fraser Valley since 2010 and the installation of streaming web cameras in raptor nests since 2006. He has been responsible for artificial nest enhancements for the majority of Bald Eagle mitigation nest projects on the south coast of British Columbia.
Recently retired as an Emeritus Professor of Wildlife Biology and Director of the Avian Science and Conservation Centre of McGill University in Montreal, Quebec and now living on Vancouver Island, Dr. David Bird has published 200 peer-reviewed papers and supervised 50 graduate students on a wide range of wildlife themes, including endangered species, toxicology, captive propagation of birds of prey, human-wildlife conflicts, and today, the application of UAVs to wildlife research and conservation. He is also a Founding Director and Senior Science Director at the Hancock Wildlife Foundation.
Dr. Bird is a past-president of the Raptor Research Foundation Inc., past-president of the Society of Canadian Ornithologists, an elected Fellow of the American Ornithologists Union, a former member of the Board of Directors of the American Birding Association, an elected member representing Canada on the prestigious International Ornithological Committee, and recently, a member of the Board of Directors of Bird Studies Canada. He is the Founding Editor of a newly launched peer-reviewed publication, the Journal of Unmanned Vehicle Systems and sits on the board of Unmanned Systems Canada, an organization dedicated to the use of unmanned vehicles.
Besides his innumerable public lectures and radio and television appearances, Dr. Bird was also a regular columnist on birds for The Gazette of Montreal and continues to write regular columns on birds for Bird Watchers Digest magazine and Canadian Wildlife magazine. In 2013 the Canadian Wildlife Federation honored him with the Roland Michener Award for Wildlife Conservation. Of particular interest, he is co-author and editor of Raptor Research and Management Techniques 2007 published by Hancock House Publishers.
Karen has been following the Hancock Wildlife Foundation eagle cams since the beginning in 2006. In November of that year she went to the Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival with some other HWF members and attended David Hancock’s talk. Afterwards she met him and had him sign his book that she had previously bought.
When she later sent him some photos from the festival, David Hancock emailed her to ask if she had any time for projects. She replied, ‘I’m retired. What do you have in mind?’ and the rest is history. She became his assistant, working as a volunteer full time from home. As the HWF Project Coordinator part of her job is to be the liaison between David and our website and forum. She also schedules his public and private talks, and is listed as the official contact on the Contact Us page of the site for anything that is not technical, which is handled by our webmaster.
David and Karen are also directors of the Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival.
After high school, Dr. Seear studied Engineering at Imperial College, London. After serving a short term commission in the Royal Air Force, he switched to medicine. After graduating from the University of Rhodesia, he worked as a government health officer in remote rural hospitals. He later moved to Canada for further studies. After completing his pediatric training at UBC, he took sub-specialty training, first in pediatric intensive care and then paediatric respiratory medicine at the University of Toronto. Apart from periods working in Guyana and New Zealand, he has spent most of his professional life working as a respirologist and intensive care specialist at Children’s Hospital in Vancouver. He runs an active research program and has published four textbooks and over 70 scientific papers. He is currently a Clinical Professor of Medicine at UBC and is head of the Division of Respiratory Medicine at Children’s Hospital in Vancouver. He has been a member of the board of the Hancock Foundation for a year. Dr. Seear spent two years working with raptors at O.W.L. and his particular interest is in supporting rigorous scientific research into raptor biology.
Diana retired after working for over 30 years as Program Secretary in the Division of Oncology at B.C. Children’s Hospital. This allows her to spend time with her grandchildren and also to pursue her lifelong love of wildlife. She is a passionate supporter of raptors, particularly bald eagles. She volunteers her time at Hancock Wildlife Foundation and is the moderator of the Vanier Park nest in Vancouver. She spends a lot of time dealing with the city and parks board trying to educate them about Eagles and how to best protect them. A lot of her time is also spent checking on all the other Eagle nests in the greater Vancouver area and reporting any problems or concerns to David. She still occasionally volunteers with O.W.L. rehabilitation when time allows. There are not many weekends that don’t involve her and Mike dealing with Eagles in one way or another.
Rosana is an electrical and electronics engineer and has been working for GE Canada since 2012. Before that, she worked for IBM Brazil as a product engineer.
Born in Brazil, where the natural environment is so diverse and the birds very colourful, the only raptor Rosana could identify by name was the harpy eagle, or royal-hawk, the largest and most powerful raptor found in the rainforest. Her work required her to travel all over the world and she was always fascinated by how nature could be so blessed in one country and so devastated in another.
Her love of the bald eagle started when she moved to White Rock, British Columbia in 2010 and realised she was surrounded by eagle’s nests along the beach. Her husband Christian Sasse bought his first specialised camera in 2011 and both of them went to Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival that year.
It was here that they first met David Hancock and Mary Scott and discovered their shared love of eagles. Since then, a deep and supportive friendship has grown up. Rosana and Christian are involved in anything that David needs help with. Love of the eagle brought them together and they are always looking for better ways and options to help preserve the natural environment around them.
In 2013 Rosana became board director at HWF and she volunteers her time by monitoring the HWF Facebook and Twitter accounts and helping to coordinate HWF events throughout the year.
Dr. Christian Sasse’s passion encompasses both eagle photography and astronomy. He has been a close friend of David Hancock since 2011 and they have embarked on trips and talks together. His academic background as an electrical engineer and physicist, particularly his knowledge of optics and the physical properties of light, has shaped his photography. His photography uniquely captures colors and patterns due to his keen sense of how his objects reflect, refract, diffract and transmit light.
Dr. Sasse runs a popular YouTube channel where he uses innovative techniques to bring wildlife to his subscribers – an experience which immerses his viewers into an active dialogue during his live events.
2018 Online Volunteers
The image shows the avatars of more than 40 of the Hancock Wildlife Foundation’s online volunteers who run our forum, control our cameras, post observations about the activities on the cameras at our four eagle nests and on other wildlife cameras across North America and around the world, and post observations and stunning photographs of eagles and other wildlife they observe live and in person. (Like many images on this website, it clicks bigger.)
There are volunteers from at least 4 countries, and from a number of Canadian provinces and US states. Several of our cam controllers (usually called “zoomers”) are from the areas near our cams – but others come from a variety of places including Alberta, Nova Scotia, Washington, Oregon, Arkansas, Florida, Pennsylvania, Maine – and England (the country). The rest of our forum volunteers are equally spread out; most are in North America – but we do appreciate having observers in other parts of the world who can watch what happens on the cams in the middle of our night.
Our online volunteers make it possible for us to have a forum with reports on the activities at roughly 40 eagle nests with cams, more than 20 eagle nests without cameras in BC, a number of osprey nests, some owl nests, a cam watching Laysan Albatross in Hawaii, pandas in several zoos, sea eagles in Australia, black eagles in South Africa – and a whole lot more!