Written by Gareth Davies

As the ever optimistic Dory from Finding Nemo says – “Just keep swimming”

For as long as I can remember I have been passionate and fascinated by nature and as a young child for many years was the proud adoptee of a duck at the local reserve. It has now dawned on me that many species I have had the great fortune to see and sometimes interact with, might not be around in the near future for my children and for further generations. For them not to be able to have the same opportunities and experiences, but to see ecological balances collapsing is almost incomprehensible. As a keen diver, snorkeller and lover of all sea creatures for many many years, I am continually dumbfounded at the sheer numbers of sharks being slaughtered around the world as just one example. I do understand that many people are trying to look after themselves and their families, with nature and conservation having to take a back seat as more and more food and fresh water is required. We have however just passed 8 billion humans on the planet, more than double the number since I was born!! What we are currently doing is not sustainable.

As many of us do I’m sure, I find it incredibly frustrating that there is so much talk at high levels and then what appears to be very little action following. Watching the media will quickly dishearten anyone passionate about the natural world, as humanity seems to be set on trying to become the ruler and/or owner of all around it. I am always saddened at the trash (mainly plastic) I recover from the small area of coastline that I have now taken upon myself to try and keep clean. Education is very much one of the keys and photography can be a powerful way to show what is happening around us. I am incredibly inspired by the work that so many do around the world and also closer to home, to look after our one and only blue/green planet.

Knowing that just by the act of planting some wildflowers, picking up plastic off the beach or photographing and learning about a creature in my back yard that I have never thought about before, has made me look at nature in a closer and much more meaningful way. It also motivates me to do at least one positive action per day, even if that’s just sharing an image on IG. The ever increasing number of humans now realising that we must work with and for nature is really heartening. Thank you to each and every one of you for your continued efforts and thank you Jessie for giving us this community to help support one another.

For more of Gareth, check out his Instagram @redbeaniephotography