Updated: Mar 23
There is nothing like seeing animals in their native habitats/homes, roaming free and happy. I know that this isn't always possible with endangered species. While some species are elusive, nocturnal, and in the depths of the deep jungle. Have you heard about the Natural History Museum Wildlife Photographer of The Year Competition? If you could see any animal in the wild which one would it be and why? Would you like to draw it? Here are some of my favourites and all things wild about wildlife.
Brookesia Micra, The Smallest Chameleon In The World, Madagascar ©MDHarding
Wild About Wildlife
Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2020
The Natural History Museum Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition has closed for 2020. In its 55th year showcasing the very best nature photography. Growing in stature from its first year in 1965, in 1984 the Natural History Museum became involved and has made it what it is today. There are now thousands of entries from over 100 countries worldwide.
Each year the exhibition takes a worldwide tour but can be seen first at The Natural History Museum London. Details still to be announced.
Edinburgh Zoo - The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS)
It is a difficult debate about having animals in a zoo but I believe that some of the conservation projects are incredible and gives everyone the opportunity to see magnificent animals up close, that you might not be able to see in their natural habitat. Edinburgh Zoo was founded in 1909 by Edinburgh lawyer Thomas Gillispie. Opening in 1913 it became one of the very few zoos to have a Royal Charter, following a visit by HRH King George VI in 1978. Today it is home to over 1,000 animals including a pair of pandas (Yang Guang and Tian Tian), koalas, Red Pandas, Penguins, and much more.
Edinburgh Zoo has seen lots of world firsts including in 1919 the first-ever King Penguin chick hatches in captivity and in 1947 Wojtek the Syrian Brown Bear retires to Edinburgh Zoo after having lived an extraordinary life as part of the 22nd Company Polish Army Service and Corps (Artillery) troops. Have you seen the statue of Wojtek in Edinburgh's Princes Street Gardens?
Did you know you can watch some of the animals via live webcams?
Yang Guang at Edinburgh Zoo ©MDHarding
Wildlife Around The World
Some destinations are wildlife specific like visiting the Galapagos Islands to see the Albatros, the Blue Footed Boobies, and of course the Giant Galapagos Tortoise. You can read more here.
What about the largest flying bird in the world - The Andean Condor at Colca Canyon and also the famous Spectacled Bear (Paddington) in Peru?
One thing that is on many a travel list is taking the big five safaris in Africa. Wow, this is a special experience.
Borneo to see the Proboscis Monkey and of course the Orangutan.
Last but not least is my favourite Madagascar. The lands where time has stood still are like nowhere on earth with 99 percent of the species endemic.
Which destination is on your travel list?
Proboscis Monkey ©MDHarding
World Wildlife Day
World Wildlife Day is celebrated annually on the 3rd of March, the theme for 2020 is Sustaining all life on Earth. We are all one and need each other to sustain all life on Earth.
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) was established in 1973 but it wasn't until 2013 on the 68th session, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) proclaimed 3rd March World Wildlife Day.
Would you like to get involved? Get to know your local animals and plants that are under threat, spread the word on social media, or maybe something else. You can find other suggestions and more about World Wildlife Day here.
Would you like to draw your own favourite wildlife scenes? There are a few great youtube videos available or what about taking an online class?
World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)
Around the world, the most famous organisation is WWF, founded in 1961 and most commonly known as the World Wildlife Fund. Did you know that one of the founders is Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh?
Today they still work tirelessly in the field of wilderness preservation, and the reduction of human impact on the environment.
If you would like to help, you can donate, sponsor or shop online at WWF.
There are also lots of resources, and things to do at home including quizzes, games, and a creative corner.
2020: Big Year For Scotland's Nature
Did you know Scotland has eleven species currently on the endangered list including the Scottish Wildcat, Red Squirrel, and Capercaillie?
Thanks for reading, I hope you found it interesting and inspiring.
Until next time, stay safe and well x