1 Dec 2010

The World's Rarest runs follow-up photo competition

By Martin Fowlie

The World’s Rarest project team is delighted to report a fantastic response to The World's Rarest Birds Photo Competition which closed at the end of August. So many wonderful images were submitted for the competition that it has taken much longer than anticipated to assess the entries. But the judging process to determine the winners is now in its final stages and the winners will be announced towards the end of the year. "We would like to say a very big ‘Thank You’ to all the photographers who kindly submitted their images to the project", said Erik Hirschfeld, Chief Editor of The World's Rarest Birds. "Thousands of photos were entered into the competition and this has made selecting the winning images very difficult. But it does mean that we have some amazing images to include in the book, which we are now working hard to complete in time to be launched at the British Birdwatching Fair in August next year. Having now analysed the competition entries, I am very pleased to report that we have been offered photos of 73% of the 566 species that are categorised as either Extinct in the Wild, Critically Endangered or Endangered. We have also received a fair number of photos of Data Deficient species, though many of these are so poorly known that it is not surprising that there are many that appear never to have been photographed." "So, we have decided to launch a new, follow-up photo competition aimed at securing images of as many as possible of the 90 species in the Extinct in the Wild, Critically Endangered or Endangered categories for which we do not currently have photos. This competition will run until the end of the year and will hopefully prove to be as successful as the first competition. We are delighted that Princeton University Press have kindly agreed to support the project by providing prizes for the new competition." The World's Rarest Birds will be a lavishly illustrated hardback book, covering the 362 species categorised as Endangered and 65 that are Data Deficient, as well as the 190 Critically Endangered species and the four species that are Extinct in the Wild and only now exist in captivity. It will be a comprehensive directory of the world's most threatened bird species and include specially written feature articles on the key bird conservation issues in each of the world’s regions. Profits from the book, published by WILDGuides, will be donated to BirdLife International's Preventing Extinctions Programme. Click here for the list of 90 missing species