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BELINDA ASHTON
SOUTH AFRICA

'As human settlements spread out across some of the last vestiges of our natural world, habitats are being reduced and our living world is becoming smaller, more fragile.

 

As these wild lands diminish, wildlife is coming into increasing contact with people and all the commotion of the modern world.

 

For me, appreciating and conserving ecological diversity has become one of the urgent priorities of our time. Through my work, I focus on the premise that urban wildlife can become a conduit of connection to the natural world that was once an integral part of our lives, and that this connection is vital to our physical and psychological well-being.

 

We will never truly understand the implications of all that we stand to lose until one day, looking back, we realise we have done too little, too late.

 

Can you imagine for a moment, the onset of spring, but no swallows? A moonlit night, yet no owls, no foxes, calling out across the darkness?'