Wonderful prizes await participants in the 2015 Digital Photo Contest at BirdsCaribbean’s 20th International Meeting, to take place at the Knutsford Court Hotel in Kingston, Jamaica from July 25 – 29 (Haven’t you registered yet? Well, now is the time!) The contest is open to all photographers (aged 18 years and over), except board members of BirdsCaribbean, the judges of the contest and their immediate families. The contest is open to all participants of the conference regardless of residence or citizenship, so long as the laws of their jurisdiction allow participation.
Contestants will need to take the photographs (and date them!) between the dates of July 18 and August 5, 2015 and during the conference. A range of field trips and early morning bird-watching sessions will provide ample opportunity to see and photograph the diversity of Jamaican birds. Participants should sign up now for mid-conference field trips (on July 27) to the Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park (where almost all Jamaica’s endemic bird species live); to the Ramsar Site and Protected Areas of the Port Royal Wetlands and Cays; or to the Portland Bight Protected Area, including Goat Islands and neighboring cays (designated an Important Bird Area by BirdLife International). There will also be pre- and post-conference trips on offer, showcasing Jamaica’s incredible variety of landscapes, flora and fauna as well as giving a taste of the island’s vibrant culture.
Photographic entries should reflect the theme of this year’s conference: “Birds: Connecting Communities and Conservation” and there are three topic areas, in which first, second and third prizes will be given:
- “The Endemics:” Endemic birds of Jamaica;
- “Fun with Birds and People”: Fun with birds, nature and human interaction (including photographs of people during conference activities, people enjoying nature);
- “Birds and Nature”: Natural habitats and landscapes in Jamaica, including close-up photography, and birds that are not Jamaican endemics.
A very important part of the work of non-governmental organizations, community groups, scientists, conservationists and individuals studying birds is not only to highlight the intrinsic beauty of birds, but also to share the activities of the people who simply enjoy them – whether they are environmental advocates, educators or enthusiasts. A practical, hands-on Event Photography Workshop during the conference, facilitated by Mark Yokoyama, Co-Founder of Les Fruits de Mer in Saint Martin, will provide step-by-step guidelines on how to show your organization’s activities in its best light – communities interacting with birds. Of course, this will allow eager contestants in the Photography Contest to hone their skills as they prepare to win one of the dazzling prizes!
Full details, including the rules of the Photography Contest can be found at the meeting website. So what are you waiting for? Photographers, sharpen your lenses! Take on the challenge! We look forward to seeing you in Kingston in July!