Nat Geo Photog’s Rare Animal Photos Lost in Airport Luggage Theft


Photographer Joel Sartore, founder of the National Geographic project The Photo Ark, has suffered a devastating loss and is asking the public for help. He had a luggage stolen at the airport in Bali, and among the items lost were three hard drives containing three weeks of photos and videos Sartore shot of some of the world’s rarest animals in Indonesia.

Sartore posted a public appeal to his Instagram, asking for help in recovering the drives:

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To All Friends of the Photo Ark, ‪Last Friday night at the Bali Airport, one of my pieces of carry-on luggage was stolen, a black Samsonite rolling bag. Unfortunately, the bag contained not only my computer, cameras, and passport, but also three hard drives that were loaded with images and videos of some of the world’s rarest animals. All were filmed during the past three weeks in Indonesia, an amazing country with incredible biodiversity. All were destined to become part of the Photo Ark.‬ I need your help now to bring these hard drives home. No questions asked. Each is blue in color, either 1 TB or 2 TB, and are made by Silicon Power. An example is shown above. If you have any information that could lead us to these missing hard drives, please contact myself, the local authorities or my friends at Asa Film in Bali, phone ‪+62 812 9829 8109‬ Thank you, Joel Sartore

A post shared by Joel Sartore- Photo Ark (@joelsartore) on

“Unfortunately, the bag contained not only my computer, cameras, and passport, but also three hard drives that were loaded with images and videos of some of the world’s rarest animals,” Sartore writes. “All were filmed during the past three weeks in Indonesia, an amazing country with incredible biodiversity. All were destined to become part of the Photo Ark.‬

“I need your help now to bring these hard drives home. No questions asked.”

The Photo Ark is on a mission of photographing all animal species living in zoos and wildlife sanctuaries around the world

The Photo Ark is a National Geographic project which has the goal of photographing all species living in zoos and wildlife sanctuaries around the globe in order to inspire action to save wildlife. The multi-year project is aiming to end up with portraits of roughly 12,000 animal species in order to promote conservation — Nat Geo says that half of the animal species on Earth could go extinct by the year 2100.

If you have any information about the blue Silicon Power hard drives (1 or 2 terabytes in capacity), you can reach out to Sartore, local authorities, or Asa Film in Bali (the phone number is ‪+62 812 9829 8109‬).





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