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NVCT Social Distancing Nature Photo Contest, entries accepted May 11th – June 15th

During these tough times, nature is bringing much-needed peace and tranquility to us all as spring blooms throughout Northern Virginia. Northern Virginia Conservation Trust wants to celebrate this beauty with you by holding the first-ever Spring Edition of their annual photo contest. The rules are the same as usual with one new twist that all photos will be judged together. We welcome submissions from anyone – especially young people – that wish to participate and submit their photos using our guidelines

Categories for Spring 2020:
From My Window
Photos of the nature visible from your window. This can be everything from views to your own flower boxes. Great for folks who may not have their own yards and live in apartments or condominiums.
My Backyard
Photos of the natural world available in our yards to those who have them. Kids and dogs playing are welcome!
Spring is Here
Photos that show the beauty of the world waking up from its winter slumber. New buds on trees, fox kits, baby deer – basically anything that says spring to you.
Social Distancing in Nature
Photos depicting how you and yours are social distancing while being renewed by nature during these difficult times.

Learn more here.

Just for fun: Two nature photography events

Article and photos by Barbara J. Saffir (c)

Critters (& more) Challenge

LIFE’S TOO EASY RIGHT NOW! Right? Of course not. But to take our minds off the pandemic, here’s a nature photography CHALLENGE! From May 1 to May 31, try to photograph as many of the following as you can while social distancing, abiding by all CDC & locale jurisdiction rules, and following ethical photography guidelines. Most of these critters, birds, plants, & landscapes can be found in your own neighborhood or nearby.

Please join the Meetup BEFORE MAY 18 and then upload your photos (1 per category) to our Meetup album by May 31. Each find counts ONE point. The “extra credit” categories count FIVE points each. The photographer with the most points who uploads her/his photos by 5/31 at 11:59 p.m. wins. FIRST-PLACE WINNER GETS BRAGGING RIGHTS — AND FIVE (5) FREE PHOTO OUTINGS after our lockdown is lifted and before 5/31/21. SECOND-PLACE WINNER GETS TWO FREE OUTINGS. (Safaris usually cost $5 within 100 miles of the Beltway and $10 outside.)

More information here

“Indoor” Critter Hunt

Look inside your computer, tap your cloud storage, and stroll down memory lane on your external drives for photos of critters & birds that you took ANYTIME for this virtual hunting expedition. RSVP for this critter hunt, upload one photograph per category into this Meetup album, and receive one point. The wildlife photographer with the most points by 5/31/20 at 11:59 pm wins bragging rights and two free photo safaris before 5/31/21. A tie(s) will be decided by the equivalent of a coin toss.

More information here

The Local Lens: Engaging communities through participatory photography

Tuesday, October 29

12:00pm – 1:00pm ET

REGISTER

For coastal fishing communities in Zavora, Mozambique, the ocean is a way of life. Yet coastal overfishing threatens this small and dynamic community on the southeastern coast. Designing a lasting solution first requires understanding the community and the perspective of people. One way to do that is through participatory photography.

Working with renowned photographer, Jason Houston, Rare gave cameras to four community members to document their lives and share their experiences through their own lens. What emerged was a personal look at the daily lives of the people of this extraordinary place along Mozambique’s Wild Coast.

Join Houston and Rare’s BE.Center for a free webinar exploring how participatory photography can be used as a powerful tool for practitioners looking to engage communities and better understand their world.

During this webinar, you will:

  • See stunning photos from this fishing community shot both by Jason Houston and members of the community
  • Hear from Jason Houston about his experience embedding himself in a fishing community
  • Learn the core principles of participatory photography and how you can apply it in your own work to gain insight into community experiences

While the webinar is free, space is limited.

REGISTER TODAY!

Raptor Education and Photo Encounter, Oct. 19th

Mason Neck State Park Picnic Area

Red-tailed hawk

7301 High Point Rd, Lorton, VA 22079

Saturday, 19 October 2019
Two sessions: 10am or 1pm
$65 for either of the two 90-minute sessions

Would you like the opportunity to photograph magnificent raptors from just 10 feet away? Imagine being close to owls and hawks with your camera in a natural outdoor setting.

The Friends of Mason Neck State Park and Secret Garden Birds and Bees are offering a unique opportunity to get up close to some beautiful birds. Participants will be able to photograph raptors up close. At least four raptors, including a Red-shouldered Hawk, a Red-Tailed Hawk, an Eastern Screech Owl and a Barred Owl, will pose for you on a natural looking perch. You’ll hear from Secret Garden Birds and Bees staff about each one of them, making this a learning experience as well.

This is a fundraising event that will help the Friends continue to present programs and work on projects in support of the Park. $40 of each registration fee is tax deductible to the extent permissible by law.

Space is limited to 20 participants per session, so don’t wait to register! Register at  Raptor Photo Session.

Nature photography on the National Mall: Birds, Butterflies, & Tarantulas

The group, led by Barbara Saffir, nature photographer and author, will meet at the FDR Memorial book store/visitor center on the Tidal Basin on Sunday, 24 February 2019 at 8 am, approximately. Then they’ll hike about 4ish miles total — with lots of stops — first along the Tidal Basin looking for snazzy-looking wintering ducks & then onto Constitution Gardens on the National Mall for more ducks and other birds. Perhaps they’ll even stumble upon an albino squirrel, a red fox, or other capital critter. Afterward, our “adults-only” group will head to the Smithsonian’s National Museum for Natural History for its live insect zoo and live butterfly exhibit. The museum opens at 10 am and you need to BUY IN ADVANCE your own individual butterfly tickets for 10:30 am ($7 to $7.50) . The tarantula feeding is at 11:30 a.m. Butterfly tickets are here:
https://www.etix.com/ticket/e/1006103/butterfly-pavilion-entry-washington-butterfly-pavilion

If they aren’t tuckered out by then, they can optionally stop for lunch at the National Gallery of Art’s Pavilion Cafe by the ice skating rink. https://www.nga.gov/visit/cafes/pavilion-cafe.html

Snow/ice cancels entire event. Rain just cancels the hike but they’ll still go to the Smithsonian and then to the indoor U.S. Botanical Garden.

Parking on Ohio Drive should be plentiful at 8 am. National Park Service may have installed meters, as threatened, so read the meters carefully to see if parking is free. Closest Metro is Smithsonian. https://www.wmata.com/rider-guide/stations/upload/evacuation/20.054.pdf

You might want to bring both short and long camera lenses. Also, it is 80° and humid inside the butterfly exhibit. They will be in the museum for about a half hour before we enter that room, but you might want to bring a bag to prevent condensation on your camera before or after.

Register here.