I passionately believe in and support the conservation efforts to save a species from extinction. Last week we celebrated World Wildlife Day, a global effort to raise awareness of the world’s wild fauna and flora.
With this in mind, I want to share my experience on saving the Ground Hornbill.
In Southern Africa we have several threatened species, some vulnerable, some endangered, and others critically endangered or extinct in the wild. So how can one man make a difference? The answer is we can all make a difference in our own unique way and it starts with understanding and education. If I can reach just one person and save one animal, I have made a difference and that is what matters!
Mabula Ground-Hornbill Project
Several years ago, I partnered with the Mabula Ground-Hornbill Project to raise funds for conserving this endangered bird. Regrettably, the plight of the Southern Ground Hornbill is relatively unknown, they require conservation interventions to help increase their numbers. Thankfully, we have an incredible organization located within the Mabula Game Reserve that continues to fight the fight every day. Through their efforts, we still get to appreciate these unique birds in the wild today.
My role is to capture the beauty of the Ground Hornbill in a life-size bronze sculpture. A project of this nature requires extensive research, a field study of the bird, and endless photographs! It is a lengthy but extremely rewarding process, and the result is inspiring. I like to call it a labour of love for conservation.
As a wildlife artist, I receive requests for various commissions for bronze sculptures from around the globe. Some adorn the reception area of a lodge, while others are commercial requests from corporate companies. Every project I undertake is done so with great enthusiasm; plenty of blood, sweat, and tears but most of all with appreciation. It is an honour to represent our heritage and contribute in my own way to saving an animal from extinction. My vision is for my grandchildren to experience the wild and come to understand the value of every animal and every bird. May they too pass on the legacy to future generations!
For more information on the Mabula Ground-Hornbill project and to donate to this worthy cause, please check out the following link : http://ground-hornbill.org.za/