The silence of Nova Scotia’s Sable Island is only broken by the song of birds, barking seals, crashing waves and whinnying horses, says Len Wagg.

The Nova Scotia author and photographer recently travelled by helicopter to the island 290 kilometres off the province’s coast.

“You see it about maybe 15 minutes out,” says Wagg. “It kind of comes into play, and then you kind of see that it’s the sand coming up there, and the waves crushing over it.”

You see little black dots — grey seals making up one of the animal’s largest populations in the world, says Wagg.

An author to more than a dozen books, Wagg is well known for documenting the natural beauty of Nova Scotia, with work published in the New York Times, Maclean’s, and TIME Magazine.

The roughly 42-kilometre long island is known not only for seals and shipwrecks, but also for the famous Sable Island horses.

“We came around a dune after we got off the helicopter, and the first thing we saw was a mare, you know, a mom and a foal. It just stopped us.”

He says the mares are protective of the foals.

“If there was another stallion that kind of came up, they would put themselves in between it. It was amazing to watch this kind of wild nature happening.”

The island is also home to many birds, says Wagg.

“There were literally thousands of terns. The ipswich sparrow, it’s the only place where that nests there, so it’s an amazing place to be.”

Some describe it as a land time forgot, he says.

“You’re just walking and there is wild all around you.”

Wagg says his next project — focusing on changing seasons — will be released sometime in the next two years.