Hob Osterlund, MSN, APRN, is an award-winning writer, photographer and conservationist living on the island of Kaua’i. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, National Geographic Explorer, Audubon, National Wildlife, Nature Conservancy, Hana Hou (Hawaiian Airlines), Ms. Magazine and more.
She is the founder of the Kauai Albatross Network and has served as a habitat liaison for a number of private landowners for several years. Her work includes direct services such as systematic monitoring of all Laysan albatross on those properties, assisting with predator control and serving as a link between private landowners and state and federal wildlife agencies.
For five nesting seasons Hob worked as a Kaua’i Coordinator for the Cornell Lab of Ornithology Bird Cam project. As a result, Laysan albatross live streaming images were played via the “TrossCam” as the chicks grew from hatch to fledge. From 2014-2018 there were 60 million views and 450 million minutes watched by viewers from 190 countries.
In 2019 Hob’s primary focus is her new documentary Kalama’s Journey. The film is about an albatross chick adopted by a female pair of birds on Kaua’i, and about the chick’s role in facing her species’ biggest threat. It also describes how the Laysan albatross species is seen through the eyes of Hawaiian culture. Hob is currently scheduled to speak for the National Tropical Botanical Garden, Volcano Arts Center and Hawai’i Wildlife Center. Hob will also be talking to local audiences in libraries and schools. She has submitted the documentary to several national film festivals and will attend as many of those as feasible.
Hob holds a bachelor’s degree in Ecological Geography from the University of California-Berkeley and a master’s degree in Nursing from the University of Hawaii. As an advanced-practice nurse, Hob founded Hawaii’s first pain and palliative care program at The Queen’s Medical Center in Honolulu. She was the Principal Investigator for the Comedy in Chemotherapy (COMIC) Study. She and her colleagues conducted a randomized controlled trial demonstrating the positive impact of comedy on the symptoms of cancer and chemotherapy.
Hob’s book Holy Moli: Albatross and Other Ancestors was published by Oregon State University Press in April 2016 and is now in its third printing. Holy Moli is now available for purchase on the OSU Press website and Amazon.com. Read these reviews and praise for Holy Moli.
Notable works, coverage and accomplishments
(cover photo: Kauai, Hawaii. Documenting the lives of Laysan albatrosses. ©Melissa Groo; headshot: Kauai, Hawaii. Also documenting Laysan albatrosses.©Catherine Steinmann)