In honor of International Day of Biological Diversity, we’re announcing the winners of CEPF’s 10th annual grantee photo contest!
Every year, the photo contest gives us a chance to celebrate the amazing work our grantees are doing to conserve species and ecosystems in biodiversity hotspots around the world.
This year’s theme for International Day of Biological Diversity is “From Agreement to Action: Build Back Biodiversity,” highlighting the work being done around the world to meet the targets of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework, which seeks to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by 2030. The many images we received for this year’s photo contest clearly demonstrate how CEPF grantees contribute to protecting and building back biodiversity in all that they do.
Congratulations to this year’s contest winners and thank you to all of our grantees who participated!
In the northern Tien Shan mountains in Kazakhstan, in the Mountains of Central Asia Biodiversity Hotspot, CEPF grantee Wildlife Without Borders worked to monitor the existing Vulnerable snow leopard (Panthera uncia) population—studying their locations, population density and threats to the species—while also hosting events to increase awareness of the snow leopard among residents in the nearby city of Almaty.
The winning photograph was taken by Saltore Saparbayev of the Wildlife Without Borders team while he was testing wild photography techniques. “This magnificent animal appeared—our reminder of the urgent need to combat urban development encroaching on snow leopard habitat in Kazakhstan that pushes snow leopard populations higher into the uninhabitable mountains and further towards other countries,” said Saltore.
CEPF grantee Nature Palestine Society worked in the North Eastern Slopes Region Key Biodiversity Area to identify populations of various species of plants in Palestine, including the Vulnerable Iris haynei, which was declared the national flower of Palestine in 2015. The area is part of the Mediterranean Basin Biodiversity Hotspot.
The organization established a protected conservation site as well as three gardens for this and other iris species, and trained local students and volunteers in plant identification as part of their effort to increase awareness of the importance of endemic, near endemic, threatened and rare plant species.
The winning Facebook Favorite photo shows a young Palestinian conservationist near the Iris haynei during a spring survey conducted by Nature Palestine Society’s team.
You can view more incredible entries from this year’s photo contest in the CEPF 2023 Photo Contest album on Facebook.