DavidMcNab's Videos

A brother's touching gift of love from across Canada4m14s

A brother's touching gift of love from across Canada

Scott Jubenville is a 22 year old man who has faced some challenges. As a baby he was diagnosed with retinoblastoma, a cancer that targets young children almost exclusively. It develops in the retinal tissue of the eyes and grows rapidly. Scott is a fighter, and he won his battle with cancer, but there were costs. He lost almost all of the vision in one eye. The illness and the treatments left him suffering from seizures throughout his life. These challenges have brought with them dpression and anxiety for Scott. But he has something going for him that has been a blessing. Scott has a close family that has been with him through his battle. And Scott also has a brother Greg, who will tell you that Scott is an inspiration. Greg moved to Alberta seven years ago for work, but the two brothers have not let the distance come between them. Greg still feels that protectiveness that comes with being Scott's big brother. Greg's love and respect for Scott runs deep and he calls Scott an inspiration. Greg wanted to do something for Scott to remind him of the brotherly bond, so he came up with an incredible idea. Although Scott lived in Ontario, thousands of miles away, Greg was going to bridge that gap and put a smile on Scott's face. Greg and Scott love high performance cars and they follow "Ghostrider" on Instagram (@ghostriderto). He's a mysterious philanthropist and exotic car owner who moves within the car scene, cloaked in secrecy. He keeps his identity hidden with his signature mask and very few people know his true name or who he is. This works perfectly for Ghostrider because he is the anonymous influence behind a lot of charity and community work but he wants no credit or recognition for what he does. Ghostrider has been quietly making dreams come true for deserving individuals for years, often through the use of his exotic cars. Although he has several, his favourite is the lime green Lamborghini Huracan Performante. Ghostrider belongs to the North Face Rally, a Toronto based exotic and super car club, kknown for their big hearts and community work too. Greg knew of Ghostrider's generous nature and he reached out through Instagram, asking Ghostrider to take Scott for a ride. But what happened was even better. Ghostrider has a friend named Dave McNab. The two met in 2016 when Dave was patrolling the highwways near Peterborough, Ontario in his police cruiser. After a traffic complaint, Dave pulled Ghostrider over and spoke to him about traffic safety. Although no offences had been committed and nobody got a ticket, Dave asked for Ghostrider to speak to the group about travelling safely. The conversation turned to community work that the car club is involved with. Dave and Ghostrider really hit it off and Ghostrider insisted that Dave take his Lamborghini for a spin. Dave couldn't pass up such an opportunity. The two have been good friends ever since. Vice was filming a documentary about the North Face Rally and captured this meeting on video. The result was a viral video that swept across social media with hundreds of millions of views. Knowing that Dave loves Lamborghinis as much as Scott does, he handed over the keys and sent his new Performante to Scott's house as a surprise from Greg. Greg told Scott only that there was somebody coming to see him. Scott was shocked to see Dave roll into his driveway in this beautiful machine and open the door for him to get in. Scott and his mother took turns revving the engine and taking photographs. Then it was time to go for a drive. Scott's jaw dropped when he heard that for the rest of the day, they would tour around in the car and go anywhere Scott wanted. Scott wasted no time with calling the first stop. He asked to go straight to his grandmother's house. After a brief game of trying to convince her he had won the lottery, his grandmother laughed and got in for a few pictures. Scott sent these immediately to Greg. Scott unselfishly wanted his friends and family to have a turn and a big part of his day was making sure others got a ride and a chance to take some pictures. Of course, a big part of riding in a Lamborghini is experiencing the full throttle acceleration that comes with 650hp and torque that will push you back into the seat. You can see Scott's reaction when they take the car from zero to the speed limit (approximately) in mere seconds. As the day drew to an end, Dave dropped Scott off at a family gathering and said goodbye. This video was made to record Scott's reaction to Greg's incredible gift. It is only fitting that he sees for himself the joy that he created for his little brother, from thousands of miles away. It was also created for Ghostrider so he could also see what happens when dreams come true. So often, he only hears about the effect of his good deeds. But this story is too good to not share. Greg's beautiful and touching love for his brother, and Ghostrider's generosity and love for giving back should be an inspiration to us all.

Fog swallows entire valley from top of volcano45s

Fog swallows entire valley from top of volcano

The Pululahua Volcano is situated at the equator near Quito Ecuador. One of the country's largest and most spectacular volcano's. Now dormant, the volcano is home to the world's only inhabited volcanic crater. It is five kilometres (3 miles) across and is 3,000 metres (9,000 feet) ab-ve sea level. Pululahua means "cloud of water" and it's wonder and mystery draw huge crowds each year to experience the beauty. The crater holds lush vegetation which is often covered by dense and mystical fog. The view can be enjoyed by walking down trails, or riding horses, or simply by looking out over the vista from the top of the volcano. Famous for it's rolling fog, the volcano and crater are a spectacular sight, especially in the late morning. A camera set up as the fog started to roll in captured the scene as the mountains and fields below disappeared under a blanket of eerily drifting fog. Within 20 minutes, the entire valley was swallowed and only a dense cloud could be seen. The wind and updraft even carried some of the water vapor up the side of the volcano where the camera was stationed. Speeding up the film creates a dramatic and breath taking effect as the valley and low mountains disappear in under one minute. The crater below is home to numerous farms and it provides a perfect location for agriculture with excellent soil for crops. This is a surprising thing, considering hot lava once flowed over these grounds, many years ago. This is a highly ranked tourist site, with hotels, hostels, restaurants and a few shops to provide visitors with all that they need for an extended stay. Of course, the view from the available rooms is stunning. Descending from the top of the volcano to the valley below is challenging, as the trail is steep and treacherous. Those who dare to take the trip down will be challenged even more with the long, steep climb back up.

Mom has comical reaction to riding in full speed Lamborghini1m09s

Mom has comical reaction to riding in full speed Lamborghini

At a recent charity event, exotic super car owners opened their car doors to the crowd, offering a full throttle thrill ride on a closed track for a donation to Cops for Cancer. This generous lady made a donation for both her and her son to experience the Lamborghini Huracan Performante, one of the fastest road legal automobiles in the world. A camera was installed in the car to record the enthusiasm and the reactions of the passengers. As we can see by the smile and the shock, this was more than she bargained for as she shouts with excitement and holds on for dear life. There were many beautiful machines available for this event, including Ferraris, Audis, Mercedes, Nissan GTRs, and a few Lamborghinis. This particular ride was provided by Ghostrider, an anonymous and mysterious figure who is a legend in the car scene. He's a known philanthropist and driving force behind many charity events, although very few people know his true identity. His car is a lime green Lamborghini with a V10 engine that boasts an incredible horsepower. It will accelerate from 0-60mph in a mere 2.9 seconds, which is less time than all but the most powerful street motorcycles.

Philanthropist interrupts media interview for 8-year-old Lamborghini fan48s

Philanthropist interrupts media interview for 8-year-old Lamborghini fan

Ghostrider is an anonymous philanthropist who keeps his identity hidden behind a mask and a veil of secrecy. A legend in the car scene, he belongs to a car club called North Face Rally, based out of the Toronto area. This car club has 300 members, all with high powered cars. They use their cars for more than just their own enjoyment, making dreams come true for deserving individuals. They also work hard to support charity and community events. They are often referred to as “The Fast and the Generous”. At a Christmas toy drive recently, Ghostrider saw an opportunity to make a young fan very happy. In the middle of an interview with the media, he noticed that 8 year old Parker was interested in his brand new, lime green Lamborghini. It’s a Huracan Performante, and to car enthusiasts like this young fellow, it’s one of the most beautiful exotic cars in the world. Ghostrider opened the door and invited Parker to have a seat, start the car and rev the engine. Parker was absolutely thrilled. The media loved the moment as well and their reaction only increased the excitement for Parker. Watching the interaction between Ghostrider and Parker was heart warming. Ghostrider may now be an extremely successful business man and entrepreneur, but he started from nothing and he remembers very well the thrill of his first super car experience. He simply can’t resist taking a moment to give this fan an experience of his own. Parker has a huge smile on his face, and if the mask didn’t block our view, we would see an even bigger smile on Ghostrider’s face. After this moment, Ghostrider ensured that Parker received a ride in his Lamborghini and his bright red Ferrari. Ever so humble, Ghostrider will speak to anyone and invite anyone to sit in his cars, take pictures, or video, and he sincerely enjoys each opportunity to brighten somebody’s day. He has loaned his cars out to make dreams come true for cancer survivors and other deserving people who have impressed or inspired him with their courage. This event was a toy rally for Sick Kids hospital and various shelters in the Toronto and Peterborough area. Having struggled to fit all of the toys in their tiny super cars, they enlisted the help of a very generous Brinks guard, named Wes Patterson, who runs his own Christmas toy drive, Toys for Joy. Wes and a partner roll out their biggest Brinks armored car each year, and escorted by a convoy of exotic cars, they make their way to a Toys R Us store for the biggest toy shopping spree of the season. Safely guarded, these toys are distributed that day to children who might not have a reason to smile at Christmas. The car club members are like kids themselves as they fill their carts full of gifts. Speaking from the heart, they tell us that most of them remember the time when they, themselves were not as fortunate, and they want to help the community and the children in the best way they know how. These big-hearted people have also been seen rocketing people around a closed track at full throttle, in exchange for donations to Cops for Cancer. They’ve gotten together to take people for rides after surgery, donated car experiences for a Down Syndrome fundraiser, and made donations to countless other charities. Ghostrider and his car club are perfect examples of people who understand the importance of giving back. Parker will never forget his meeting with Ghostrider and the experience with the cars, and Ghostrider will not forget meeting Parker. Follow @Ghostriderto on Instagram or Twitter #Ghostriderto

Family dog is seriously unimpressed with new head gear17s

Family dog is seriously unimpressed with new head gear

Koda is one and a half years old and he has a beautiful personality. He will put up with almost anything without protest. This is a good thing because he belongs to a family with young kids who adore him and love to play with him. He soaks up all the love and affection good naturedly. He also loves to play with toys that he can fetch or chew on, like this purple octopus. When his owner, Tianna dropped the octopus onto his head, Koda patiently sat perfectly still. Watching his eye, visible through the gap in the octopus' legs, we can see what appears to be a look of good-natured annoyance. He stares straight ahead, as if in disbelief over the indignity of having such a ridiculous toy on his head. Tianna can't contain her amusement and she bursts out laughing at Koda. His eyes rotate to the right to look right at her and this expression seems almost human. He blinks and looks straight ahead again and if dogs could speak, it looks as if he would say: "Really Tianna?" There seems to be no doubt that he is questioning her maturity at this point, or he is mildly offended that she is laughing at his expense. Then, in typical dog fashion, he flips his head back to get the toy octopus off of his face so he can chew it. All appears to be forgiven and he is now playing along with the game. He is able to get the toy in his mouth and make it squeak. Perhaps the look of disgust is a result of his own sense of humor and he's enjoying the game after all. The look he gives at the very end is enough to melt your heart. Koda is a mix of german shepherd, husky, and golden retriever. Commonly called "mutts", these mixed breeds often combine the best of several breeds and have the most wonderful temperaments. They seem to make the best family dogs too. As you can see, Koda is a beloved family member and he enjoys all the privileges of family, including being welcome on the family couch right next to his people.

Cat loves to give herself a warm shower every day54s

Cat loves to give herself a warm shower every day

Vanna is a cat with a lot of personality. And she loves to imitate her owner, Maria. She became fascinated with the shower and the running water. Most cats soon figure out that the bathroom faucet is a source of entertainment as well as being a good place to get a drink. But Vanna has also decided that she wants the water running over her. Maria is happy to oblige and she even adjusts the water so that it is warm. Vanna moves around under the water as is if she is bathing and wants to get herself entirely clean. Vanna actually asks for her "shower" every day now. For years, people have asked the question: "Why do cats prefer running water?" This has baffled most of us, but animal experts believe that it's an evolutionary thing that goes back to when cats were wild animals. They instinctively knew that stagnant water was more likely to carry disease and infection. Running water was more likely to be clean and safe. Cats also have a fascination with things that move. Many people have cats that wait at the sink for the tap to be turned on, even if they have a bowl of readily available standing water to drink from. And many cats alternate between drinking and pawing at the water. Having natural curiosity and an understanding that the water is coming from somewhere, it is very likely that this playing is actually a form of inquisitiveness, as much as for entertainment. It is highly unusual however, to find a cat that enjoys being immersed in water, even partially. Vanna stands with her head under the stream and rotates around under the tap to get herself as covered as possible. While doing so, she even enjoys a drink and a little bite at the stream of water. At one point, she stands still, obviously enjoying the sensation of warm water running over her neck and back. Vanna's owner can also be seen checking the water temperature to ensure that it's not too hot for this adorable cat. Pets provide us with endless hours of amusement, especially when they are acting a little bit like a person.

Sea turtle casually swims through group of scuba divers27s

Sea turtle casually swims through group of scuba divers

Pacific green sea turtles are a frequent enough sight in the waters around the Galapagos Islands. But getting a close look is a treat that doesn't happen every day. Shy and reclusive, they will move away from divers unless the approach is extremely slow and cautious. It is very unusual to have a sea turtle approach a human, as this one did. Whether it was indifference, or curiosity, the turtle headed straight for the divers and swam through the group. This is a remote area, Known as Kicker Rock, off the coast of San Cristobal Island. Although the turtle has undoubtedly seen people underwater before, diving and tourism is heavily regulated and very limited in the Galapagos Islands, and this turtle would not likely have seen humans often. Expectations for proper behavior here are extremely high and it is almost certain that the turtles enjoy more respectful and predictable interactions on those rare occasions where they do meet people close up. Gone are the days when people would hang onto sea turtles for pictures, or for rides, especially in this protected area. In fact, the waters around the Galapagos Islands make up the world's second largest protected marine sanctuary. Scuba divers here appreciate the privilege of being allowed to enter and the guides are strict. People who don't obey the rules with respect to the wildlife find that their scuba diving or their visits promptly come to an end. This turtle is a fully grown, mature female. They look identical to male green sea turtles except for three obvious differences. The male has a slightly larger head than the female. His tail is also much larger. The tail of this female is less than 1/4 the size of a similarly sized male's tail. A third, but less obvious difference is the presence of small white hooks on the leading edge of the front fins, approximately halfway out from the body. These hooks help the males hang onto the females during courtship and mating encounters. As this turtle calmly swam through the divers, it swam directly in front of the camera and provided us with a beautiful view of it swimming gracefully out into the blue ocean.

Swimmer spots shark trailing hook and line from its mouth37s

Swimmer spots shark trailing hook and line from its mouth

While swimming in the Galapagos Islands, this swimmer found himself to be the object of fascination for several large sharks. In fact, at times, they were surrounding him. Swimming in the Galapagos Islands is a beautiful experience. This diver was on a cruise boat that headed for the remote and fascinating world of Darwin’s Arch and Wolf Island, an area of the ocean where three major currents come together and bring with them an abundance of food for larger animals. The water is alive with sea turtles, fish, and sharks. After the last dive of the day, this tourist couldn’t resist slipping into the water beside the boat and swimming in the clear, blue water. Although he knew there were sharks, he wasn’t expecting them to suddenly surround him. A diver in the water is one thing, but one on the surface seems to attract a lot more attention. The sharks swam around and under him. A few even came up to look right into his camera. But surprisingly, one of the sharks had a metallic object in his mouth. It was a large hook with a wire and fishing line trailing behind. Fishing is highly regulated in the Galapagos Islands, but it does take place. The hammerheads also migrate a long distance, as do the sea turtles, whale sharks, and other large creatures. It is very possible that the hook has been in the mouth of this shark for a very long time. Stainless steel hooks are slow to rust and it’s a myth that there are enzymes in a fish’s mouth that makes them rot quickly. This hook might be in the shark’s mouth for a long time to come too. Fishing for hammerhead sharks is not a widespread practice. It is more likely that the shark was hooked accidentally as it took bait that was meant for another catch. It does not appear, however, that this shark is particularly bothered by this hook as it seems to still be healthy and active.

Giant fish bait ball eclipses scuba divers in Galapagos Islands57s

Giant fish bait ball eclipses scuba divers in Galapagos Islands

Bait balls are a congregation of fish that can number in the millions. Spectacular to see, they form an enormous ball, with the fish tightly packed together for protection from predators. Usually adopted by fish that inhabit open waters, this technique allows individual fish to hide within a group since they cannot hide behind coral or plants as other fish do. These scuba divers are swimming through the open water around Darwin Island, one of the most iconic and beautiful dive destinations in the world. They swim among schooling hammerhead sharks, sea turtles, and whale sharks as they explore the ocean up to 100 feet from the surface. As they swam, they noticed a sudden decrease in the light, as if they were experiencing an eclipse. Looking above them, they saw that the cause of the darkness was actually this collection of fish. Mesmerized, the group swam under and then around the fish, fascinated by the beauty of such a spectacle. When fish school like this, they have many eyes and it is nearly impossible for a predator to surprise and ambush them. They react with lightning reflexes to rapidly change directions. Such fluid and coordinated movements appear to be choreographed, although they are not. Schools rapidly disband and then reform as needed. Their silvery bodies dazzle predators and make it difficult for a larger animal to locate and zero in on an individual. Predators have developed complex hunting techniques in reaction to this schooling behavior, often cooperating between species, or even different species, to attack the bait ball and encourage frenetic and disorganized movements. Fish scramble to remain within the interior of the mass. As fish break from the bait ball and are found on their own, they are more easily targeted and eaten. Occasionally, large fish and whales will charge a bait ball with their mouths open to scoop up a number of fish.

Divers wait in the rocks while hammerhead sharks circle above them1m14s

Divers wait in the rocks while hammerhead sharks circle above them

Scuba divers in the Galapagos Islands were thrilled to be surrounded by dozens of circling hammerhead sharks. The Galapagos Islands and the waters around them are home to some of the world's biggest and most interesting ocean animals. These divers perched themselves on a shelf created by a volcanic eruption nearly 4 million years ago and watched the currents sweep the marine life past them like the world's biggest Imax Theatre experience. This is a unique part of the world where three major ocean currents converge and mix, delivering plankton, small fish, krill and other food to the surrounding waters in abundance. This food supply in turn, attracts larger fish, hammerhead sharks, Galapagos sharks, silky sharks, sea turtles, and the majestic whale sharks. The currents create an entire ecosystem and food chain that is unlike any other. And understandably, the ocean life here also attracts scuba divers. The Galapagos Islands in Ecuador are among the world's most cherished and sought after dive destinations. These divers slip into the water and fight the currents as they rapidly descend to the rocky ledges on the edge of a great abyss. They find shelter and hang on and then they watch the spectacle unfold in front of them. Enormous schools of hammerhead sharks drift past, sometimes within a few feet of the divers. They will see sharks drifting over their heads, in between them and all around. While this is enough to raise the heart rate of even a seasoned diver, these nature lovers know that hammerheads do not consider humans as food and aggression towards people is extremely rare. But it is one thing to know this and another to completely believe it. The divers can't help but be in awe of the power and speed of the sharks as they cruise past them. Entering the animals' domain requires respect and caution and improper behavior in this world can have serious consequences. These divers are fortunate enough to see a show that only happens for the privileged few.

Giant bull turns his nose up at banana offering1m40s

Giant bull turns his nose up at banana offering

Gus is a giant bull who weighs in at over 2,000 pounds and stands about 5' 6" at the shoulder. He's quite a bit short of the 6' 4" monster named Steer who is taking the internet by storm, but he's still a big boy by any standard. And a big bull like Gus has a big appetite. He grew up spending time on several beautiful farms in the area of Millbrook, Ontario. Gus is a breeding stud and he goes where he is needed. But lately, he has enjoyed a leisurely life on this farm with rolling pastures, lush meadows, and a few small ponds. It's the good life and he wanders happily, munching on grass and visiting with his ladies for a good part of his days. Gus is also a curious and friendly bull and he's become quite accustomed to visits and treats from a friend named Dave. Dave's son, Cameron decided he wanted to meet Gus too. Knowing that he's a serious fan of bread, Cameron brought Gus a loaf of Bavarian whole grain and a banana as well, just to see his reaction. Cameron and Dave walked into the field and found Gus in the middle of his herd. He trotted over happily when he saw that he had guests. Cameron held out the bread and waited. Although he had been warned that Gus is really big, he wasn't quite prepared for a face to face meeting with such a massive animal. Cameron can be heard laughing nervously and saying "It's like coming face to face with a rhinoceros." Gus saw the bread and started inhaling it as fast as Cameron could get it out of the bag. Gus eats by wrapping his tongue around food like giant hand. He pulls it into his mouth and swallows. Sometimes he chews and sometimes he doesn't. After a few slices of the bread, Cameron peeled the banana and Gus watched with curiosity. But when he sniffed the fruit, he turned up his nose and looked away. He stood looking very offended for a minute, like an indignant, overgrown child, refusing to even look in Cameron's direction. He then decided he would go back to eating bread and he gave a giant head shake before continuing where they had left off. Cameron gave Gus the rest of the loaf and he seemed to forgive the whole banana misunderstanding. Cameron was still not used to being beside an animal ten times his size and Gus' curious advance to see in the bag had him backing up comically. Gus also likes his giant head being scratched and he stood expectantly until this was done. Like a massive dog insisting on attention, he moved his head around and soaked it all up. After the bread and the head scratches were done, Gus wandered off happily.

Super car club needs armored car to deliver toys to Sick Kids Hospital2m30s

Super car club needs armored car to deliver toys to Sick Kids Hospital

North Face Rally is a well known super car and exotic car club in the Toronto area. They are known for having fast and beautiful cars, and for having the legendary Ghostrider (Ghostriderto) as a prominent member. But something that they are also known for is their passion for community and charity and for helping deserving people, especially children. They have held countless charity events, fundraisers and toy drives. They have made wishes come true for deserving people and children who dream of having a ride in a Lamborghini, Ferrari, or other sports car. They even set up a closed track event where participants were rocketed around a circuit at full throttle in exchange for a donation. Another prominent group in the charity scene is Toys for Joy, a group of committed individuals in the Peterborough area who have been collecting toys and donations at Christmas for almost a decade. When the North Face Rally tried to stuff all of their toy donations into their race cars, they knew they needed help. Ghostrider approached Wes Patterson from Toys for Joy and asked if they could borrow the Brinks truck to help deliver their toys to Sick Kids Hospital. Wes got the biggest truck Brinks had, decorated it in perfect Christmas fashion and rolled it out of the yard with Nathan Mason. These officers arrived at the start of the rally and had an exotic car escort to Toys R Us. Dozens of members of the North Face Rally, along with Wes, Nathan, and Tom Garrett, a cancer survivor who has received life-saving care at Sick Kids hospital, descended upon the aisles at Toys R Us. They filled carts until overflowing and lined up at the checkouts. Not surprisingly, some of the toys that they selected had a race car theme. They pulled the armored car up to the door and filled it to overflowing. With the toys safely locked in the back, the group set off for Sick Kids hospital. Their load of toys filled the donation boxes in the hospital lobby. These toys will be used to put a smile on the faces of children who are facing challenges at Christmas, or those who will be spending their holidays in a hospital bed. With Christmas spirit like this, it’s easy to understand why this group is known as “the Fast and the Generous”.

Nervous swimmer realizes beautiful giant manta ray is circling him33s

Nervous swimmer realizes beautiful giant manta ray is circling him

Upon surfacing after a dive in the Galapagos Islands, this diver was making his way to the small boat to be picked up. He had a short swim to reach the boat and as he approached, he saw a giant shadow between himself and the boat. He could not immediately make out what the shadow was, but it was moving quickly and circling him. He had been recording the dive with his GoPro and he held the camera out on front of him as he tried to make out the figure. The waters in the Galapagos Islands are home to thousands of hammerhead sharks, Galapagos sharks, silky sharks, and many other large creatures. A seasoned diver, he knew that encountering any of these animals beneath the surface is rarely dangerous, but to have one circling you at the surface with interest can present a very different scenario. Divers near the bottom do not look like food to most sharks, but at the surface, the silhouette and glare can create misunderstandings and occasional danger. This diver was relieved to discover that the circling animal was actually a giant manta ray, one of the most graceful and beautiful animals in the ocean. With a wing span that can reach more than 20 feet and can weigh over 3,500 pounds, these rays are massive. As the ray circled slightly closer, the diver was rewarded with a brief glimpse of the manta. Mantas are a welcome sight for divers and a close encounter is unforgettable. They are gentle creatures that eat plankton, krill, and tiny fish. Having no barb or stinger like many rays, their only means of defense is to rapidly flee from a threat. Manta rays have been known to show curiosity when they encounter people. They don’t have teeth and they pose no threat at all to humans. After the initial concern, this encounter was breath taking.

Man instantly surrounded by sharks after stepping off cruise boat1m28s

Man instantly surrounded by sharks after stepping off cruise boat

While on a live-aboard dive boat in the Galapagos Islands, one of the passengers couldn’t resist slipping over the edge to enjoy a swim in the clear, blue ocean. He was wearing a mask and snorkel, along with fins and he took his GoPro with him. He didn’t expect to be met immediately by a dozen or more very interested sharks. Sharks from a distance are a beautiful sight. Even close up, a shark or two on a swim can be welcome and fascinating. But a group of sharks surrounding a swimmer will test the nerves of even the most committed aquatic nature lover. Holding his camera between himself and the sharks, as much to provide a sense of reassurance as it was for capturing the footage, this swimmer found that they had no fear of him at all. They casually swam up to his camera and looked right into his face. They swam under him and all around, passing and then circling back to have a closer inspection. The slow, lazy swimming of the sharks is a sign of mild curiosity, not aggression and these sharks did not seem to regard the swimmer as food. Silky sharks have been known to be aggressive to divers on occasion and swimmers are well advised to leave the water if their behavior suggests that they are hungry or agitated. They will often approach strange creatures because full grown sharks like these have very few predators and nothing to fear. Silky sharks grow to a length of more than 8 feet and reach a weight of 400 pounds. They eat tuna, mackerel, and other large fish. Their hearing is extremely acute and they use it to locate other large marine animals that are feeding so that they can also locate the food source. Like many shark species, their numbers are declining due to fishing and illegal harvesting for shark fins. Pollution and habitat destruction have also contributed to their decline.

Baby sea lion tries to interrupt parents' cuddling to get milk1m19s

Baby sea lion tries to interrupt parents' cuddling to get milk

Sea lions in the Galapagos Islands inhabit most beaches and even rocky shores. They have been residents of the islands since long before people lived there. They act like they own the beach and it’s understandable that they feel this way. They live in complete harmony with the human inhabitants who have complete respect for the animals. People keep a respectful distance and insist that the tourists who are privileged to visit also do the same. In fact, the people are committed to not interfering with nature in any way. For this reason, sea lions pay little attention to people. They are often found sunbathing on the same sand, only a few feet apart. This can create some entertaining scenarios and it gives people a close up look at their funny behavior. Of course, the tourists here are not accustomed to the large animals spread out all over and they often snap pictures and record videos of these clowns of nature. The babies can be playful and curious in the water and although people are expected to keep their distance, it can be impossible with these very agile creatures swimming in circles around you. It is one of the few times when it is acceptable to interact, carefully, with the animals, as it is completely on their terms and it can’t actually be avoided if they decide that it’s play time. The adult females are indifferent and will look at people with only mild curiosity. They are often too busy hunting for food or caring for their young. The adult males are completely different, and when they are sexually mature, they are territorial and aggressive with any other male sea lions and even with people. This large male waddled up on the beach, barking to announce his presence, and claimed his spot beside a female from his colony. In an unusual and comical display of affection, he lay down beside her, snuggled up close and put a protective fin over her, exactly as a human would do. A baby sea lion lying nearby can be heard as he starts to cry for milk from his mom. He waddles over too but his timing is very unfortunate because the male does not want his lady or their cuddle time to be disturbed. The baby approaches and starts to move in but the bull barks and shakes his head. The baby is not deterred and the bull lunges at him with a pretend attempt to bite. The open mouth and big teeth are enough to give the baby second thoughts about milk and he scrambles away out of reach. He seems to be thinking of trying again as he circles around, but the bull gives him another warning. He waddles off camera but his cries of protest can be heard as the bull settles down again with the mother. Mom seems indifferent to both of them, clearly more interested in sleeping than in much else. The bull gets comfortable again, adjusting his back fins on her face and then finally settles beside her, giving her an affectionate caress as they both drift off to sleep. For now, the milk will just have to wait.

Street Artist performs seemingly impossible feats 1m10s

Street Artist performs seemingly impossible feats

Street performers in Guayaquil, Ecuador work as hard as any for their money. Performing astonishing feats of balance and coordination, they put on impressive shows for the spare change that people might be willing to hand them. But what is even more amazing is that they put on these shows at busy intersections and crosswalks at red lights when traffic is stopped. Hurrying out into the intersection with their props, they juggle pins, spin balls, twirl hoola hoops and balance objects on their noses. These two buskers actually combine several of these all at once. And as if that were not enough to inspire the audience to pass them a small token of appreciation, they do all of this while keeping a watchful eye on traffic. These performers can be found in many larger centers in Ecuador and many of them work the corners and crosswalks for their living. Having skills that are almost superhuman, they have obviously practiced long hours to perfect their shows. The first busker in this video spins a basketball effortlessly on his finger, but the giant umbrella in his other hand suggests there is something more to his performance. Sure enough, he balances the ball on the point and raises the umbrella over his head. Somehow he keeps the ball spinning, despite the fact that he can't possibly see it. As he puts the handle of the umbrella on his forehead, it doesn't seem possible that he can actually keep them both balanced as the ball spins. Then unbelievably, his other hand reaches between his knees to where he has been holding three tall bowling pins. Without dropping the umbrella or the ball, he begins to juggle the pins. Not being content with a simple rhythm, he throws some higher and gives them an extra spin. He lets one balance on his chin and then works it back into the juggle as it falls. He can't possibly be able to see the pins because his eyes seem locked on the umbrella above. He's doing all of this with peripheral vision and instinct. To make his show even more appealing, this performer provides music that is very fitting of his lively performance, relying on a small boom box on the sidewalk. He's still got one eye on the traffic light and when it is about to turn green, he closes the umbrella, collects his ball and pins, and gives a bow. He looks to the crowd for a little generosity in the form of a coin or two from the motorists. But watching this performance for a few minutes, it became clear that tips are hard to come by. He only collected one dollar out of the three performances that he put on for the tourists filming this show. He alternates with his partner who puts on a similarly impressive performance, juggling pins and spinning a hula hoop, balancing a spinning ball on his head at the same time. The story behind many of these street performers is that many have come from neighboring countries such as Peru or Argentina where life is even harder. Many arrive in Ecuador as refugees and struggle to survive. These two buskers seemed intent on impressing the tourists filming them and they succeeded. They were also given a tip that left no doubt that their work was appreciated, as was the permission to film them.

Did our science teachers tell us the truth about water spinning in the drain?1m13s

Did our science teachers tell us the truth about water spinning in the drain?

We've all seen water swirl around in the drain or in the toilet, creating a vortex, also known as a whirlpool. We’ve also noticed, if we live in the northern hemisphere that the water almost always swirls in a counter clockwise direction. Even if we stir the water and make it go clockwise, the last little bit will swirl the other way just before going down the drain. And most of us have heard the claim that the water swirls the opposite way in the southern hemisphere. We grew up being told this in school but we probably weren’t completely convinced. It makes little sense that the effect on a tub full of water would be the opposite on the other side of an imaginary line on the earth. These Canadian tourists traveled to Ecuador for a three week adventure in the Amazon and the Galapagos Islands, but part of their journey involved a visit to Quito, a city at the “middle of the world”. They had the opportunity to visit a scientific center that straddled the line between the northern and southern hemispheres. This experiment took place exactly on the equator, shown by the red line that can be seen running directly under the gold tub in the first of three parts of this demonstration. The guide explained that the swirling of the water is referred to as the Coriolis Effect and that it is caused by the rotation of the earth and the effect that the rotation has on free floating matter such as water and air. Anything north of the equator is subjected to a small, but noticeable force that spins non fixed objects in a counter clockwise direction. South of the equator, the force spins objects in a clockwise direction. He explained that this effects not only the water in the sink or toilet, but also the currents of the oceans and the air surrounding the earth. This is why cyclones and tornadoes spin in different directions, depending on their position relative to the equator. The guide poured water into a tub and pulled the plug to drain the water into the bucket below. Sprinkling a few leaves on the surface of the water, he showed that there was no vortex right on the equator. Moving only a few feet to the southern hemisphere, he showed that the water swirled clockwise. Repeating this in the northern hemisphere, the vortex spun counter clockwise. Surprisingly, even a short distance from the equator, the Coriolis Effect was obvious. This effect is most obvious at the earth’s poles, but only at the equator can you see all three demonstrations within a few minutes. It turns out those grade eight science teachers were telling us the truth after all!

Cat becomes trapped in couch under sleeping Great Dane49s

Cat becomes trapped in couch under sleeping Great Dane

Mitzy is a cat who likes to climb through the cracks in the cushions to hide in the couch and sleep. It's a pull out couch with a folded mattress below the cushions so it's easy to get inside and find a nice, cozy hiding spot. It's even easy to squeeze back out. Unless, that is, a 130 pound Great Dane dog decides to climb up onto the couch and sleep too. The couch was claimed long ago by Briva, a 12 year old Great Dane who tries her best to snooze for at least an hour every morning and every afternoon. She’s been a loyal and loving family member and she’s earned the right to stretch out in the sun whenever she likes. Mitzy is also a loving and treasured member of the family. Ironically, Briva and Mitzy began their relationship over a couch. Mitzy actually adopted this family on a very cold winter night almost ten years ago. She found her way into the house through an open window and came face to face with Briva. She darted under the couch and hid, terrified of the giant dog. Mitzy was welcomed into the family and Briva quickly accepted her. For the most part, the two get along quite well now. Mitzy is a typical cat and has those mood swings and unpredictable moments that keep Briva guessing. It’s especially true when they both want the same couch or dog bed. Dave was working away at the desk beside the couch when he heard Mitzy’s muffled cries. It didn’t take long to figure out where she was because this is a common spot for Mitzy to sleep. But this is the first time that Mitzy has been trapped under the slumbering dog. Unable to resist, Dave turned on the camera and recorded while he tried to find Mitzy. It was clear after a few moments that Briva needed to get off the couch before Mitzy could come out. Mitzy emerged from the corner, gave Dave a very annoyed look and then ran for freedom. Moments later, Briva reclaimed her spot in the sun and was fast asleep again.

Freak hail storm pummels streets at the equator50s

Freak hail storm pummels streets at the equator

Hail itself is not that unusual a weather phenomenon. We often see hail in North America, even on warm summer days. Super cooled air from high up in the atmosphere allows a small ice pellet to form in the clouds during a thunderstorm. A strong upward air current keeps the pellet aloft longer and other water drops or ice pellets adhere to the pellet and freeze. Hail grows bigger the longer it is suspended buy the updraft. Hail can measure 5mm (0.2 inches) in diameter right up to 15cm (6 inches). At those sizes, hail can be extremely damaging and dangerous. Usually a short lived phenomenon, hail only falls for a few minutes and it is quick to melt once it reaches the ground. And although none of this is unexpected, what is unexpected is to see hail falling in tropical climates. You can imagine the surprise of these Canadian tourists as they took a taxi ride through Quito, Ecuador, a city that is extremely close to the equator. The locals don’t see this sort of weather very often. The taxi driver in this case said that he had only ever seen hail falling once before. The effect was surprising and mesmerizing at the same time. Descending from a high altitude at the city center, as the tourists made their way to the Quito airport, they were fascinated with the instant accumulation of rushing water in the street, mixed in with pelting stones that were the size of small marbles. It is actually the higher altitude of the city of Quito that makes this phenomenon even possible. Situated at almost 3,000 feet above sea level, the city sits high in the foothills of the Andes mountains. Hail falling at the equator is so rare that some of the residents that were talking about this storm said that they had never seen hail in their lives. This storm caused a lot of debate about global warming and about climate change. Although it is likely just a combination of several factors coming together to create a normal, although rare, weather event, all of the changes that we have seen in the past few decades would certainly make a person wonder if this is a sign of our impact on the environment. This storm was so surprising for the residents that many could be seen recording the event with their phone cameras during the brief downfall.

Beautiful rainbow colored insect tries to climb onto camera58s

Beautiful rainbow colored insect tries to climb onto camera

This big, beautifully colored insect resembles a giant grasshopper but it is actually a Vestria katydid that makes its home in the Amazon rainforest in Ecuador. Colored with gorgeous shades of blue, yellow, and green, he has most of the colors in the rainbow. He even has bright orange feet that make him look as if he is wearing socks and mittens. These gorgeous little animals are often referred to as rainbow katydids. He makes his home high in the canopy, nearly 150 feet (50m) above the forest floor. Although they inhabit the forest at all levels, they can often be found high in the trees. This beautiful creature was found by a group of Canadian tourists who were on a guided tour of the jungle. They were taken on a canoe ride, followed by a long hike that led them to a giant kapoc tree. Kapoc trees are enormous trees that tower over all other vegetation in the rain forest. They have wide trunks with giant bases and a massive root system to hold them in place, even in fierce storms. Life in the Amazon thrives around, an on, these majestic trees. Plants such as ferns, mosses and beautifully colored flowers grow on the branches and in the crooks along the trunks. These plants are host to a very diverse collection of birds, insects and other animals as they provide food and nesting areas as well as shelter. This katydid is one of the many creatures that live on this tree. There is more than enough vegetation to provide his food and his shelter. While katydids are omnivores, they generally prefer plants for food, but the Vestria katydid is an exception. It hunts and eats other insects for the majority of its diet. He will also be able to find all of the moisture he needs in the mosses and in the cracks of the tree. The colors on this little fellow are no accident or coincidence. Nature is complex and almost everything about the animal kingdom has a purpose, even if we don’t understand it. The bright colors are a signal to predators, such as monkeys, birds, lizards, and spiders, that the katydid is foul tasting and may be toxic. One of the defenses of this katydid is that it can emit a chemical called a pyrazine. This chemical is excreted from scent glands and it is another signal to predators that the katydid cannot be eaten. Tourists are able to reach the top of the kapoc tree, where this katydid lives, by climbing a steel staircase that was constructed beside the tree and is carefully strapped onto the tree so that it will not cause any damage. The world at the top of the canopy is fascinating enough that tourists spend hours on the small platform, learning from their guides all about the wonders of the forest and the creatures that inhabit it. And if that were not interesting enough, the spectacular view of the rain forest from above certainly is.

Baby sea lions teach swimmer how to blow bubbles1m28s

Baby sea lions teach swimmer how to blow bubbles

Baby sea lions are one of the world's most adorable creatures. In the Galapagos Islands, sea lions are plentiful on beaches and shorelines. The inhabitants of these islands have learned to live in harmony with the animals, being careful not to interfere in any manner. They avoid interaction with the wildlife whenever possible and expect that the tourists will do the same. But the baby sea lions refuse to stick to this policy and they are known for being playful, and even mischievous at times. Although clumsy and awkward on land, they are tremendously agile in the water. They are capable of putting distance between themselves and a human with a few flaps of their powerful fins if they chose. But they are also capable of circling people and darting in and out, inviting them to play. If they approach you in the surf, there is often no avoiding them and swimmers are delighted to take advantage to the rare exception to the rules. These two young sea lions are much too young to venture into deep water to hunt. They would be easy prey for sharks and other large predators. They spend their days in the safety of the sheltered beach and wait for their mothers to return with food and milk. They will be reliant on their mother for up to three years. Although they will hunt with her when they are bigger, they spend their day napping and playing at this stage. Waiting for mom can be boring and young sea lions regard any new object, or person with curiosity. Kristy realized that these two sea lions were circling her and that they were repeatedly diving and spinning as they were close to her. They also stopped and stared at her, blowing bubbles out of their noses in steady streams. They were obviously waiting to see if she would do the same. When she rolled and dove, the babies became excited and swam in fast circles around her. She laughed and let out bubbles of her own. As if to tell her that she was not doing it right, one of the sea lions swam up to her face and let out a long, steady stream of bubbles, watching her as he did so. This form of sea lion play seemed much like a human toddler saying “can you do what I can do”. Having such an invitation to interact with wild animals on their terms is a delightful and magical experience!

Stubborn puppy needs to be carried from vet's office58s

Stubborn puppy needs to be carried from vet's office

Georgia is a gorgeous 4 month old Bernese Mountain dog with a mind all her own. It is typical of this breed to lay down and refuse to move when they simply don’t want to. They can be as stubborn as a spirited donkey when the mood strikes them. She has a patient and loving owner named Eric who can laugh at her stubborn streak. Georgia has a beautiful home on a country farm, complete with fields to roam and woods to explore. She even has 9 of her brothers and sisters to play with. She should be excited about the idea of going home. But Georgia simply loves coming to the veterinarian. Dr. Kristy and the staff truly love animals and it shows. They shower Georgia with affection and treats and Georgia feels like a true diva when she is there. It’s a unique veterinary clinic that has found remarkable ways to reduce an animal’s stress and make them more comfortable with their treatments. People are encouraged to bring their fur babies in to visit regularly, taking away the association of going to the clinic with vaccinations and nail trims. They get so many delicious treats during these procedures that many animals don’t even mind the less pleasant aspects of their visit. It’s no surprise when it’s time to leave and Georgia plops down in the doorway, refusing to budge. It’s amusing to the staff. They see it all the time and they realize that it’s a sign that they’ve done their job well. They also love Georgia and her beautiful face is irresistible. When she finally gets her feet under her and starts to walk, it looks like she’s on her way. Then she plops down again at their feet, eager for a last little bit of affection. Everybody’s hearts melt and she knows she has them all in love with her. Finally, Eric decides that he will not convince her to get to her feet and he scoops her up in his arms. But Georgia is not the usual puppy. At 4 months old, she already weighs about 40 pounds and stretches almost to Eric’s knees as he carries her out the door. Everybody is laughing at this point, including Eric, as he goes out through the door and loads Georgia into his car. Stubborn as she is, you can’t help but love that face!

These diving marine iguanas look like a prehistoric Aquaman!1m57s

These diving marine iguanas look like a prehistoric Aquaman!

Marine iguanas are among the world's most unusual creatures. Specially adapted to one of the most harsh and unforgiving environments on earth, they live on lava rock beaches in the Galapagos Islands. There is no food for them on the barren shore and the vegetation inland is coarse and almost inedible. These vegetarian lizards have evolved to live on algae that grows in the raging surf along the coast, sometimes as deep as 33m, or 100 feet below the surface. The iguanas are cold blooded and they rely on the heat of the sun to warm their bodies so they can move swiftly, as well as to allow them to digest food. Warm muscles are crucial to avoid predators like hawks, foxes and large rodents. The black rocks are a perfect place to soak up heat and seek shelter. They lie in the open until they have warmed enough to brave the cool water. Despite being at the equator, these islands are surrounded by cool ocean currents that keep the temperature low. Once warm, the iguanas begin diving off cliffs or slipping off the rocks into the surf to feed. They leave the shore in groups, timed as if on a synchronized clock, and they feed for 30 to 60 minutes each day. They are powerful swimmers and they can hold their breath for up to 30 minutes at a time. They are limited by the temperature and their feeding is done as quickly as possible before they return to the shore to warm up again. They will enter the water once per day and it is important that they store up as much algae in their bellies as they can in a short time. The algae, and the water that they ingest contain enough salt that most creatures would be unable to survive on this diet. But the lizards have special salt ducts that allow them to expel the salt in a thick liquid that is sneezed out of their nostrils. Lying on the rocks after feeding allows them to digest the algae and rid their bodies of the toxic levels of salt. Keeping an eye on the sky above them for birds of prey, they must always be wary. The marine iguanas have short snout and a face that closely resembles a dinosaur. In fact, many people believe that the marine iguanas provided the inspiration for the famous Hollywood monster, Godzilla. Their faces are almost identical. The Galapagos Islands are home to some of the most unusual creatures on the planet and people journey there for a close look and some very unique wildlife. Charles Darwin made these islands famous when he studied the wildlife there in 1835 and put forth his theory of evolution. Swimming with marine iguanas is a highlight for divers from around the world and a big part of the adventure that many seek in the Galapagos.

Hunting sea lions swim through astonished divers 50 feet deep39s

Hunting sea lions swim through astonished divers 50 feet deep

Sea lions are incredibly skilled hunters, able to hold their breath and dive for long periods while on the hunt for fish, octopus, and eels. They are seen frequently on the beaches, around the rocks near shore, and even in the shallows. But it is rare to encounter them 50 feet below the waves. Imagine the surprise of these divers as they explore the walls off Kicker Rock in the Galapagos Islands when a colony of large sea lions rocketed past and through them. The first group of females actually passed beneath the divers, incredibly fast as they chased after fish. Hunting in a pack, you can easily see how these sea lions are accomplished at catching prey. They are far more agile in the water than they are on land. A large male followed close behind. Being much bolder and more confident, he swam in between the divers, having a close inspection of these curious creatures. This is an isolated area where humans are not common. It is likely that this sea lion has not seen scuba divers up close very often. Possibly recognizing them as human, he might have been equally surprised to see them at this depth. The divers were delighted with this encounter and they exchanged looks of astonishment at seeing them so far from the surface. The sea lions all continued on their way and they could be seen looking closely at the crevices along the rock wall as they swam, hoping for a chance at a meal. As the scuba divers continued along their route, they encountered a large group of Black Striped Salemas, small bait fish that congregate in giant schools. One of the sea lions had returned and was taking advantage of the distraction that the scuba divers created. She could be seen swimming around and through the bait ball, gobbling up as many as she could catch. Sea lions are delightful creatures, playful and cute, but to see them hunting with such skill was a reminder that they are also very capable predators. Nature has many sides and the opportunity to see this up close is unforgettable.

Scuba diver scrambles to avoid whale shark's approaching tail19s

Scuba diver scrambles to avoid whale shark's approaching tail

Divers in the Galapagos Islands had the incredible experience of meeting a massive whale shark up close. The giant beast is almost 50 feet long and could weigh as much as 100,000 pounds. They are the biggest fish in the ocean and, aside from some whale species, the largest animal in the world. Divers wait a lifetime to catch a glimpse of these majestic creatures and some dare to dream of capturing a picture or video of them. For almost all scuba divers, this is the ultimate underwater experience. Despite their enormous size, they are the gentlest souls in the ocean and will never harm a human. Most encounters are brief, as whale sharks don't often seek interaction with people. They will veer away, or even dive deep if they are concerned. A few sweeps of their massive tail will carry them quickly to safety. But this particular whale shark seemed mildly curious about the divers. She is a large female, carrying young that will be born soon. She approached a group of divers and swam slowly through the middle of them, giving them an arms length encounter that none of them will ever forget. As if wanting to get her own look at them, she arced gracefully, curving past several and allowing some a second look. Kristy couldn't resist the once in a lifetime opportunity and began snapping photographs as the whale shark circled below her. Drifting in the strong current, Kristy found herself directly over the shark's back only a few feet from it. Respectful divers will not touch marine life, especially a whale shark, and they try to avoid accidental contact. Knowing the massive tail was approaching her, Kristy scurried over the shark's back and tucked her fins in to avoid being struck by the tail. Equally concerned about the danger of impact and the possibility of upsetting the whale shark, she made sure that she was out of the way. Being in the presence of such a huge and majestic creature leaves a lasting impression that will never be forgotten.