Photographers Unite Against Wildlife Crime with New Book

Wildlife crime is a serious problem in today’s world. Unfortunately, it’s a problem that is incredibly difficult to deal with and leaves many people feeling powerless about what they can do to change it.

Photography has always been a powerful media – just look at the recent rhino image, by Brent Stirton, that won Wildlife Photographer of the Year. In fact, Brent is one of the photographers who is part of a brand new book that aims to take on wildlife crime: Photographers Against Wildlife Crime™.

photographers against wildlife crime
Confiscated Rhino Hooves of two adults (male and female) and one calf.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service stores 1.3 million seized items at a warehouse in Colorado. © Britta Jaschinski

To be published through the efforts of a Kickstarter campaignPhotographers Against Wildlife Crime™ sees 20 high-profile photographers joining forces to make a difference. The likes of Michael ‘Nick’ Nichols, Brent Stirton, Adrian Steirn, and Charlie Hamilton-James all have images featured amongst the pages of this unique book that shed a light on a very hidden world.

photographers against wildlife crime
The mahout who has raised the orphan from SA has a trusted bond . The Elephants are raised to maturity and released as part of a long term study of rehabilitated animals. Abu Camp, Okavango, Botswana.
© Chris Packham
photographers against wildlife crime
On April 30, 2016, Kenya staged its biggest ever ivory burn – 105 tons at Nairobi National Park.
© Charlie Hamilton James

The book “aims to use hard-hitting and inspiring images to help stir public opinion into seeking an urgent end to the demand for wildlife products,” said the founders of the project, Keith Wilson and Britta Jaschinski.

Crucially, there will be a version of the book published in Manadarin for distribution in China. This will bring a powerful message to where it needs to be heard first.

photographers against wildlife crime
A thresher shark caught in a gillnet in Mexico’s Sea of Cortez. Tens of millions of sharks die each year as victims of fishing by-catch or to satisfy the demand for shark fin soup.
 © Brian Skerry
photographers against wildlife crime
Fennec foxes are captured for the illegal pet trade. This three-month-old pup was for sale in a market in southern Tunisia.
© Bruno D’Amicis

“What I’m seeing is absolute decimation of environmental spaces and species like never before,” said Brent Stirton, Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2017. “Most of the world doesn’t really understand what’s going on with its own planet.”

With an estimated value of $20 billion, the illegal wildlife trade holds the title of the fourth most lucrative global crime after drugs, humans, and arms dealing.

“The greed continues today with no regard for the health of the planet we call home,” said former Wildlife Photographer of the Year, Michael Nichols.

photographers against wildlife crime
A captive-bred Philippine eagle hand fed at The Philippine Eagle Center. Loss of habitat due to deforestation means these eagles are critically endangered. Some captive-bred birds have been released back into the wild.
© Klaus Nigge
photographers against wildlife crime book
A volunteer with the NGO, Care for Wild Africa, comforts a baby rhino after undergoing treatment for injuries caused by hyenas. The rhino was orphaned after its mother was killed by poachers. She was luckier than most as many calves who see their mothers killed are also attacked by the poachers, using machetes to break their spines so they cannot run away. 
© Brent Stirton

The crowdfunding campaign to publish the book has a target of £20,000, with distribution available worldwide to those who choose to back the project. Having almost raised half of the money already, Photographers Against Wildlife Crime™ is well on the way to becoming a reality.

Proceeds from the sale of the book will go to charities working to end illegal wildlife trade.

“Some of us risk our lives to document incomprehensible cruelty and ruthlessness. The public wants to see an end to the demand for wildlife products to save species from extinction. By supporting Photographers Against Wildlife Crime™, you can help us to make a difference and end the trade,” said the project’s founder, Britta Jaschinski.

More information about the book can be found on its dedicated website, and you can order your own copy now via Kickstarter for a reduced price of £32.

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