Image captures biodiversity threat- 20 February 2014


KYALAMI – They say a picture captures a thousand words, and Tyrone Mckendry’s photo of an African grass owl fleeing flames of a veld fire, did just that.

His photographs appeared on the front page and page 3 of Midrand Reporter, with the story Red data species habitat threatened (week-

Tyrone Mckendry of the Greater Kyalami Conservancy took this photo of an African grass owl fleeing the flames of a veld fire in November last year in Blue Hills. The birds' nesting area is close to a property earmarked for development in Blue Hills.

Tyrone Mckendry’s photo won the 50/50 VeldFokus competition.

ending 22 November 2013).

The story sparked much interest in the Midrand community but the conversation centred on how well Mckendry’s photographs captured the story.

Mckendry said, “I loved the sense of drama that is conveyed in the photograph and that you get a real sense of what the owl must be going through, as a massive fire destroys the nesting area where they have been for the last eight years.”

He decided to enter it into the 50/50 VeldFokus competition and he was “thrilled” to discover he had won.

“The judges’ comments were similar to my own, they liked the uniqueness of the photograph and felt it ticked all the boxes for the competition,” he said.

The competition also gave Mckendry, who is currently studying towards a BSc Honours in Ecology at Wits University and works extensively to track the biodiversity in the Greater Kyalami Conservancy, an opportunity to raise further awareness for African grass owls and how they are threatened.

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