A film and photography exhibit celebrating the freshwater life of Southern Appalachia
Story and photos by David Herasimtschuk
A true spectacle of biodiversity, freshwater hosts a
teeming collage of colors, shapes and behaviors. These flowing waters are
essential to life. Yet, as a society dependent upon this vital resource, how
often do we look beneath the water’s surface? Over the last ten years,
Freshwaters Illustrated has worked to document the vibrancy and wonder of life
found in the rivers and streams of Southern Appalachia, North America’s most
biologically-rich waters. This unique region harbors the world’s richest
temperate fish fauna and is home to the highest diversity of freshwater
mussels, snails, crayfish and salamanders on the planet. Highlighting this
great variety, Freshwaters Illustrated created its newest
feature film, Hidden Rivers, which
follows the work of conservation biologists and explorers throughout the region
and reveals both the beauty and vulnerability of these ecosystems.
If a nature photographer clicks her shutter in the wilderness, and no one else is around to hear it, can it still make an impact? It sure can! The work of professional and aspiring nature photographers can save ecosystems, species and beautiful landmarks. NANPA understands the important work you’re doing.
And better than the sound of one hand clapping, NANPA and the NANPA Foundation have many ways to recognize and support the work, career or budding potential of nature photographers. All during the year, there are opportunities to apply or nominate someone for an award, a grant or other recognition.
Several are running now or about to start. Let’s take a look. One could be tailor made for you!
Award Highlights Use of Photography in Conservation Efforts
The NANPA Foundation is pleased to announce that Krista Schlyer of Mount Rainier, Maryland is the recipient of the 2016 Philip Hyde Grant for her work using photography and visual storytelling to draw attention to one of the United States’ most denuded river ecosystems: the Anacostia River. This $2,500 peer-reviewed grant is awarded annually by the NANPA Foundation to a nature photographer who is actively pursuing completion of an environmental project. Continue reading →
Applications for the 2014 Philip Hyde Grant are due on November 30th, 2013. This $2,500 grant, provided by Fine Print Imaging through its Art for Conservation program, the NANPA Environment Committee and individual donations, is awarded annually by the NANPA Foundation to an individual NANPA member who is actively pursuing completion of a peer-reviewed environmental project that is consistent with the missions of NANPA and the NANPA Foundation. Click here to apply.
Project Update from Jaime Rojo: 2012 Recipient of the Philip Hyde Grant
The San Pedro Mezquital project is an ongoing communications effort to protect the last free-flowing river in the Western Sierra Madre, Mexico. The river is under threat by several development projects, including a dam in the middle basin and a huge tourist resource in the upper basin.
The Philip Hyde Grant that I obtained in May 2012 was used to continue the documentation of this huge river basin, but also to give public presentations in the upper and lower basin to involve the local communities in the actions to protect the river.
In May 2012, we inaugurated a large format exhibit of the San Pedro Mezquital that was hosted by the three main cities of the basin, following the course of the river on its way to the sea. I gave presentations on Durango and Tepic on the day of the exhibit launch, and had meetings with regional authorities involved in the management of the river basin:
– Durango, upper basin, May 2012
– Presidio, middle basin, Oct 2012
– Tepic, lower basin, Jan 2013
Also, in January 2013, I did a 2-week expedition with my colleague Octavio Aburto, co-financed by National Geographic Explorers Fund, to document some of the most remote parts of the upper basin (Chachacuaxtle canyon and the Tres Molinos basin), with some surprising results, and a field blog was published in National Geographic Newswatch. The Philip Hyde Grant represented a great opportunity to continue the conservation photography work in the San Pedro Mezquital river and I will always be thankful for NANPA’s support.
The Sacred Headwaters in northern British Columbia is the shared birthplace of three great salmon rivers—the Stikine, Skeena and Nass. It is also the traditional territory of the Tahltan First Nation, and it supports a vast ecosystem known for large numbers of moose, caribou, sheep, goats, wolves and bears.
In 2004, Shell obtained tenure of nearly a million acres in the heart of the Sacred Headwaters for a coal bed methane development that would entail thousands of wells connected by roads and pipelines, fracturing wildlife habitat. The water-intensive fracking process that would be used to remove the methane risked altering water levels and contaminating the rivers. Continue reading →