Freedom’s eagles have flown from iconic landmarks, including the Eiffel Tower in Paris, St. Paul's Cathedral in London and the tallest building in the World, the 829 metre Burj Khalifa in Dubai, recording unique footage that has attracted record audiences to its conservation efforts.
The Dubai images recorded by Freedom’s eagles was the most viewed video on BBC's social media network ever.Columbia and Freedom Conservation - Victor the Eagle - 1
We met with Jacques-Olivier in 2014 and immediately became one of the Freedom Conservation partners: As an outdoor brand we share the same values: Preserve wildlife and ensure that wildlife and humans may live together in the outdoors. It’s our common playground.
It appeared obvious that Geraldine Fasnacht “the bird woman" and Jacques-Olivier "the man who teaches eagles to fly" should meet each other.
The outcome was stunning: Géraldine flying with the eagle Victor over Chamonix. For the first time an eagle flew with a human. See the video
Then we thought what about sending Géraldine and Victor into the wild together. Our new 2016 project was born: FREE AS A BIRD.
“Free as a Bird” offers a deep insight into our relationship with the wild. The story follows Jacques-Olivier, an out of the ordinary falconer and conservationist, his eagle Victor, eager to fly in the wild, and Géraldine, a passionate snowboarder and wingsuit flyer who spends most of her life between the mountains and the sky.
Over a series of expeditions in the great outdoors, the trio will head out to understand what it would take for humans to live in harmony with the majestic white-tailed eagle, a species that has been eradicated from Western Europe half-a-century ago.
Using their combined skills, across water, air and rocky cliffs, they will explore places where these eagles still soar freely, and other places where they used to thrive but have long since disappeared.
Their journey will challenge us to imagine what it means to be free as a bird. Why has the white-tailed eagle been able to survive in some places, yet was driven to extinction in others? What would it take for us to live in harmony with wild species? How do our ideals hold when those species threaten our own livelihood? What can we learn about our relationship with nature? And ultimately, might it not be time for us to re-wild ourselves?