I helped create this short film, Reconnecting the Rio Grande Valley, as part of my participation in the 2011 North American Nature Photography Association College Program in McAllen, Texas.
The natural environment of the Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV) has largely been lost due to fifty years of intensive agricultural and urban development. What’s left has been fragmented into small, unconnected patches of forest – so much so, that many people have forgotten that they live in one of the most biologically rich environments in the country. US Fish and Wildlife, Texas Parks and Wildlife, and local landowners are working together to reconnect these forest patches to one another, and to the local people that live near them.
This short film was created in five days by members of the 2011 NANPA College Program, group of students representing five countries and twelve American states. The US Fish and Wildlife Service provided supplementary images of ocelots, and the US Geological Survey provided satellite imagery for the project. All other footage and photographs were taken by the students, during the North American Nature Photography Association's Annual Summit.
Created by Joris van Alphen, Mariana Baez-Ponce, Leon Bartolome Hernandez Herrerias, Abe Borker, Nathaniel Child, Nate Dappen, Abbygale Gazica, Thor Morales, Kari Post, Aaron Schmidt, Connor Stefanison, Stephanie Walden, and David Wong.