Im­pres­sions of the Wild

Artist Van Wangye is pas­sion­ate about the nat­u­ral world and hopes his work will make a dif­fer­ence for the planet by fur­ther­ing wildlife con­ser­va­tion ef­forts and sci­en­tific ed­u­ca­tion.

Asian Geographic - - CONTENTS -

01 Ti­tle: Price of Greed | Me­dia: Mixed | De­scrip­tion: A clam­orous reed war­bler (Acro­cephalus sten­toreus) ig­nores a big fat juicy cater­pil­lar of Al­lan­cas­tria louris­tana in pur­suit of a “spi­der”, which turns out to be the tail of the spi­der-tailed horned viper (Pseu­do­cerastes urarach­noides), a viper species dis­cov­ered in 2006. Both the viper and the cater­pil­lar are en­demic to west­ern Iran whereas the war­bler is a mi­grant bird.

02 Ti­tle: Look­ing for Land | Me­dia: Colour pen­cil and pen­cil | De­scrip­tion: A po­lar bear trapped on a small ice sheet was look­ing for thicker ice to move to. Po­lar bears are threat­ened not just by cli­mate change but also tro­phy hunt­ing.

03 Ti­tle: Spot­ted Seal mother and pup | Me­dia: Mixed | De­scrip­tion: Spot­ted seals (Phoca largha) are inhabitant­s of arc­tic or sub-arc­tic wa­ters. They are a mi­gra­tory species. Both Canada and China are huge mar­kets for seal skin and penis (for medicine). Sadly, the lat­ter is sold in Chi­nese med­i­cal halls in Sin­ga­pore.

04 Ti­tle: Dili­gent Fa­ther | Me­dia: Mixed me­dia with cof­fee | De­scrip­tion: A dom­i­nant male In­dian gavial (Gavi­alis gangeti­cus) guards his hatch­lings – a rare be­hav­iour among crocodil­ian species. The In­dian gavial is en­demic to In­dia and listed as crit­i­cally en­dan­gered in the IUCN Red List.

06 Ti­tle: Gar­goyle Gecko | Me­dia: Mixed | De­scrip­tion: En­demic in New Cale­do­nia, the New Cale­do­nian Bumpy Gecko (Rha­co­dacty­lus au­ric­u­la­tus) is one of the rarest species of gecko. It has a rel­a­tively small nat­u­ral range and is threat­ened by de­for­esta­tion. But cap­tive breed­ing, to­gether with the pet trade, help re­store the pop­u­la­tion of this species.

07 Ti­tle: Philip­pine Crocodile | Me­dia: Colour pen­cil | De­scrip­tion: En­demic species to Philip­pines, hence got its com­mon name. (Crocody­lus min­doren­sis) IUCN sta­tus crit­i­cially en­dan­gered. Its per­haps the most se­verely threat­ened crocodile species in the world.

08 Ti­tle: Ti­betan An­te­lope | Me­dia: Colour pen­cil | De­scrip­tion: Not many peo­ple out­side the TCM (tra­di­tonal Chi­nese medicine) in­dus­try know that Ti­betan an­te­lope antlers were some­times used to sub­si­tute Saiga An­te­lope’s antlers in antler’s essence drink. Antlers of older Ti­betan an­telopes are too hard, long and dry, so younger adults are usu­ally tar­geted for the TCM mar­ket. Ti­betan an­telopes are also poached for their fleece.

Sin­ga­porean Van Wangye Shim­ing is a self-taught award-winning wildlife/ sci­ence il­lus­tra­tor. He’s also a graphic de­signer, art teacher and con­ser­va­tion­ist. His at­ten­tion to de­tail, sci­en­tific ac­cu­rancy and abil­ity to por­tray sub­jects in a dy­namic way are a tes­ta­ment to his pas­sion for the nat­u­ral world. Wangye’s art is col­lected or com­mis­sioned world­wide by art col­lec­tors, rep­tile hob­by­ists, politi­cians and na­ture lovers and is archived in Chir­ic­ahua Desert Mu­seum in Rodeo, USA. He had also worked for var­i­ous wildlife con­ser­va­tion so­ci­eties world­wide: WWF Thai­land, Na­ture So­ci­ety Sin­ga­pore, Her­peto­log­i­cal Con­ser­va­tion In­ter­na­tional (HCI), Mekong Tur­tle Con­ser­va­tion Cen­tre, Ocean Geo­graphic So­ci­ety and more. He hopes his work will make a dif­fer­ence for the planet by fur­ther­ing wildlife con­ser­va­tion ef­forts and sci­en­tific ed­u­ca­tion.

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