50 Times People Saw Something Odd In Nature And Shared It In This Online Community (New Pics)
If you suddenly feel like being drawn to nature more than ever before, you’re not alone. This new research from the RSPB, the UK's largest nature conservation charity, revealed huge public support, 4 in 5 people to be exact, for putting nature at the heart of coronavirus recovery plans for the government.
I mean, surviving the public health crisis made us all reevaluate our life choices, values and intentions. One of which became an almost universal realization that we need more self-care, more human connection, and more of Mother Nature.
So for anyone craving greenery, animals, and soul-soothing gifts of nature, we have this amazing compilation of pictures inspired by the r/MildlyInteresting subreddit. From an unbelievable desert bloom and frozen windscreen that looks like an award-winning shot of Everest glacier to incredible flowers and weird-shaped fruits, these are the curiosities of nature people have spotted and had little choice but to share them with others.
To find out more about the wonders of nature, Bored Panda reached out to David Taberner, a nature photographer and English teacher based in Boston, Massachusetts. You can check out his website “Decent Nature Photography” full of David’s mesmerizing shots of nature.
Taberner said that nature photography is the most recent iteration of nature-based hobbies for him. “My spare time has always been spent in nature in one way or another: from childhood walks through the woods to long-distance backpacking in my early 20s to daily dog walks around local conservation land in my adult life. I've always liked to take pictures with my phone, but it wasn't until my partner generously gave me a DSLR for Christmas that the world of photography opened up for me.”
The photographer also said that he hopes to one day use his photography to encourage conservation. “I often wonder to what degree sharing my images online harms rather than helps. Instagram pages like mine are full of beautiful images of wild animals and unspoiled landscapes, which may lead the viewer to imagine that all is well in the natural world. The truth is, things are far from okay; every day more habitat is lost to development and more carbon is emitted,” he explained. Taberner also said that the trick for him right now is “figuring out how to not perpetuate the illusion that all is well, but instead be an ally to the natural world.”
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When asked what it is about nature that makes it such a magical place like no other, Taberner said that it's hard to express in words. He explained: “Waking up early and walking down a trail, away from the cars & concrete that I'm normally surrounded by, feels like a return or a homecoming. When I'm in the woods, I try to shut off the chatter in my brain and instead turn outward. I suppose it's a sort of meditation: what can I see, hear, smell, and feel? Focusing on my senses makes me feel more connected to the forest, is good for my mental health, and is extremely helpful from a photography standpoint, both in terms of finding compositions and noticing wildlife.”
“I don't think there's a doubt that people have grown distant from nature. Our alienation from nature is best illustrated by the very term ‘nature,’” Taberner told us. “We conceive of nature as something other than ourselves, a place that we can visit from time to time, but not something that we are part of or live in.”
The nature photographer believes that just getting people out into nature is not as simple as it sounds. “Even among nature lovers, there seems to be a disconnect between our appreciation of nature and the often thoughtless consumption that is an everyday part of American life, including my own,” he added.
Taberner believes that although he spends so much of his time admiring the natural world, he also knows that he participates in the destruction of it with almost every purchase he makes. “The fact is, our economic system is based on the exploitation of people and the natural world. Until we transition to a sustainable, just economy, our disconnect from nature—regardless of what you or I do as individuals—will simply be baked into our way of life,” he commented.
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For those who’re wondering, the day of the nature photographer starts, as Taberner says, “painfully early” since animals are typically most active at dawn. “I wake up painfully early to get to a location where I'll have a good chance of seeing wildlife. A lot of effort and patience goes into this type of photography, from planning to scouting to trail cams to sitting in a blind for hours at a time waiting for an animal to show up.”
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When asked about his favorite memory of taking pictures in nature, Taberner recounted: “One day I went for a walk with my partner at a location where I had spent several early mornings looking for wildlife without any luck. I assumed that we wouldn't see any wildlife because it was midday, but within twenty minutes, we witnessed a family of otters eating fish on the bank of the pond and a porcupine bumbling down the trail, totally unbothered by our presence.”
It was a special moment for Taberner that’s hard to forget. “I felt so humbled like the natural world was playing a joke on me, almost as if it was laughingly saying, ‘sorry, did you think you knew something about how I work?’ I also loved that my partner was able to share in the wonder and excitement that I feel when I see animals, wild and free, in their natural habitat,” he concluded in an interview.