Original Painting Medium: Pastels
Scientific Name: Necrosyrtes monachus
Region: sub-Saharan Africa
I am a Signature Member of Artists for Conservation and in 2017, received a request asking if I would be willing to donate an artwork for the ‘Silent Skies’ project at the 27th Int. Ornithological Congress in Vancouver, Canada. The focus, to highlight all 678 endangered species of birds of the world in a large mural comprising individually created paintings.
Sadly vulture numbers are declining dramatically due to an anti-inflammatory drug known as Diclofenac: a drug fatal to vultures, and used liberally by Asian and African farmers. If an animal dies, it is left to rot… and for thousands of years vultures have cleared-up these carcasses for us: protecting us from bacteria and disease. With the misuse of this cheap and easily accessible drug, 100’s of 1000’s of vultures are being poisoned. Many farmers also leave poisoned bait hidden deliberately in dead rabbits or goats, to kill scavenging dogs, and again our vultures are the innocent victims.
Over the centuries, mankind has demonised vultures; but by performing this extremely important task, vultures have kept our environment healthy.
I chose to portray a Hooded Vulture as they are characterful, unusual and important birds. I also really enjoyed meeting, photographing and portraying in pastels, this handsome and colourful vulture.
My artwork will be auctioned In August 2018 to help raise awareness and funds to help all our endangered bird species. With each card purchased, 25p is donated to the Vulture Conservation Foundation to help them in their good work.