Thursday, October 6, 2022
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Snowy Owl by Mike Fernandez

Put in: 04/01/22

Concerning the Chicken: A denizen of the excessive Arctic, Snowy Owls are spectacular to behold—giant, highly effective, and with snowy white feathers completely advanced to mix in with their icy habitat. Often folks as far south as Utah and Washington D.C. will catch a glimpse of 1 in the course of the winter, when populations irrupt, or sporadically migrate, a lot farther south than their typical vary. The Snowy Owl’s Arctic habitat is very susceptible to world warming. If we don’t take motion to gradual local weather change, 93 %—practically all—of the icy tundra the place the owls nest and breed will turn into too heat to help them. A big swath of the United States can be projected to turn into unsuitable for them in the course of the winter, which means many individuals will now not expertise the surprise of an irruption.

Concerning the Artist:  Mike Fernandez is a filmmaker and photographer based mostly in New York Metropolis who strives to construct group together with his work. He’s additionally the video producer for the Nationwide Audubon Society, the place he’s dedicated to addressing the range hole—principally the shortage of individuals of coloration and younger folks—within the environmental area and conservation motion.

Mike has been concerned with the Audubon Mural Mission since its inception because the individual behind the digicam documenting the numerous artists and murals. It’s an initiative he’s grateful to be a part of, he says. “As a New York Metropolis resident, it is a solution to give again to the group, work together with them, snigger, share tales, and share the enjoyment that birds deliver to all of us.” And as a LatinX individual, initially from Peru, he additionally has a particular appreciation for the spot the place he painted his mural of a Snowy Owl. “The Washington Heights neighborhood looks like a particular place to me,” he says. “It’s colourful, energetic, and lots of residents are migrants like myself and birds.”

Video: Mike Fernandez/Audubon

Mike selected his mural topic as an homage to Hedwig, a Snowy Owl that was discovered injured with a gunshot wound close to New York’s La Guardia Airport. A volunteer introduced her to the Wild Chicken Fund, the place Mike photographed the fowl. “I used to be starstruck,” he says, “being within the presence of this magical creature, understanding that we’d by no means cross paths once more, that this second was particular. Hedwig spent months in rehab and finally was launched again into the wild.”



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