The summer weather has finally arrived and many of us are spending more time outdoors.
As you enjoy B.C.'s amazing natural beauty, the BC SPCA invites you to celebrate the wild animals that share our communities, by capturing them in still photographs or on film.
The SPCA - which operates the animal shelter in Maple Ridge - is currently promoting two contests, with entry-fee proceeds going to help the more than 2,000 injured and orphaned wild animals rescued each year by Wild ARC (the BC SPCA's wildlife rehabilitation centre on Vancouver Island).
In the fourth annual BC SPCA wildlife-infocus urban wildlife photography contest, all amateur photographers at least 14 years of age and permanently residing in British Columbia are invited to submit their best digital photos depicting wildlife.
It can include free-living birds, mammals, amphibians, reptiles, fish, and insects in urban settings such as greenspaces, roadsides, beaches, and even backyards.
Entry fee for this contest are $5 per photo and deadline for submissions is Sept. 30. For more details, people can visit spca.bc.ca/ wildlife-in-focus.
If you're an emerging Steven Spielberg or an up-and coming James Cameron with a passion for wild animals, the BC SPCA's Wild ARC is now accepting film entries for the second annual Wild ARC Paws and Claws Film Festival.
This festival showcases wildlife-inspired films shot in Canada and the United States.
The contest is open to all filmmakers - amateur or pro, of any age - who wish to share their take on the beauty and resiliency of North American wildlife.
Submission deadline is Sept.28. Public voting on finalist films in the three entry categories will be held both online and at a live screening event in October.
The film entry fee is $10 and films made in any style or genre are eligible.
For more information on how to enter, how to vote, and festival details, people can visit spca.bc.ca/filmfestival.
VOTING FOR THE WILD
Another way that you can help B.C. wildlife is by casting your vote for the BC SPCA's Wild ARC in
the Jamieson Cares Call for the Wild competition that started Monday, Aug. 13.
Wild ARC is the BC SPCA's wildlife rehabilitation centre in Metchosin on Vancouver Island, a facility that cares for more than 2,000 injured and orphaned wild
animals each year, and it was the only B.C. organization chosen for the competition.
Wild ARC is one of five Canadian wildlife organizations selected by Jamieson Laboratories to participate in its people's choice donation program that divides $100,000 between the organizations, based on the number of public votes received on the company's Facebook page until Sept. 16.
Jamieson's Call for the Wild! campaign was launched two years ago to increase awareness about protection, rescue, and rehabilitation of Canada's wildlife.
Throughout the five-week program, Facebook visitors can learn about the important work of each organization, watch videos of the groups in action, and ask questions through social media.
As they learn about the contribution of each wildlife organization, Canadians will be invited to cast a vote for their favourite. Every vote translates into a proportional donation from Jamieson Laboratories.
"We are honoured to be selected to participate in this competition and we urge people to help us bring as much of that funding home to B.C. as possible to help the wildlife who urgently need rescue and rehabilitation in our province," said Sara Dubois, manager of wildlife services for the BC SPCA.
"People can vote every 24 hours, so we hope people will vote as often as they can to help us save animal lives."
Visit spca.bc.ca/vote for details.
- Lorie Chortyk is BC SPCA's manager of community relations