Our Resources

<< Back to all articles

“Giants of the night” puts the whale shark on the conservation agenda

Rafael Fernández has won the award Underwater Photographer of the Year 2022 with a nocturnal picture showing a group of the largest living fishes in the world. Fernández’s photograph captures five whale sharks feeding together at night in the waters off the Maldives. It triumphed over 4200 underwater pictures entered by underwater photographers from 71 countries. The photo captures a unique ocean event, taken in demanding photographic conditions. With the name“Giants Of The Night” , the image features five whale sharks feeding together on nocturnal plankton that have been concentrated in the lights of a boat. The image will help to put this endangered species in the agenda of international conservation action.

The author from Spain has described it in this way:

“It was already incredible when one whale shark came to our boat. But more and more kept arriving. I was diving with Gador Muntaner, a shark researcher, who couldn’t believe it as their numbers grew. He counted 11 sharks that night — a once in a lifetime encounter that nobody thought was possible.”

and competition judge Peter Rowlands added:

“This image took my breath away from the first viewing and I never tired coming back to it. Scale, light and the sheer numbers of big subjects, this was, by some distance, our winning image.”

The population of these animals has fallen by half

The whale shark (Rhincodon typus) is the largest living fish in the world. It is an endangered species, with less than 50% of its original population still surviving. The number of whale sharks that exist is declining due to targeted fishing campaigns and “accidental” captures that are significant in areas where there are high densities of whale sharks.

While many of the commercial fishing companies for this species were shut down by law during the 1990s and 2000s, whale shark products remain valuable. In fact, this animal is still commonly caught in some countries. Serious injury and inferred mortality from boat strikes also pose a serious threat.

Many of the areas where these animals live are exposed to a fairly massive tourism of humans who come from all over the world. Their spectacular size and beauty, and the relative absence of danger they represent, exposes them even more. In the absence of conservation action, the decline is likely to continue into the future. Luckily, there are organizations and volunteers who are fighting for this precious animal to continue sailing the ocean.

And you can also help save this magnificent species! Wherever you are, whatever you have, and right now. This is My Earth is protecting habitats with high concentrations of endangered species, both on land and in the sea.

For example, one of the areas you helped us to save is this marine reserve in Turneffe Atoll, Belize, with a spectacular marine biodiversity.

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

TiME ∙ Oct 1

19 min read

“TiME is about sharing the word so that we can share the world more healthily”

We had the privilege to talk to Camille T. Dungy, poet and editor of the bestseller All We Can Save, about nature conservation, poetry and This is My Earth. In your poem “Characteristics of Life,” published in the book All We Can Save, the figure of the poet is presented as a powerful voice that…

TiME ∙ Oct 1

15 min read

“TiME is the only nature conservation nonprofit I know in which 100% of your donation goes to where it’s needed”

“We need to integrate all sorts of knowledge,” says Jordi Vilanova, PhD student and TiME volunteer. We had the chance to interview him before the beginning of his new adventure in Canada. What brought you to study Ecology and Biology? I’ve always been very interested in ecosystems and animals. When I started my Master’s, I…

TiME ∙ Oct 1

22 min read

“La fotografía de la naturaleza tiene que enseñar, despertar curiosidad y compasión por la biodiversidad”

[INTERVIEW IN SPANISH] – Entrevistamos a Santiago Rosado Hidalgo, biólogo y fotógrafo en la reserva El Silencio de Colombia, y colaborador de This is My Earth. Buenos días Santiago, ¿cómo te presentarías? Buenos días, mi nombre es Santiago Rosado Hidalgo, soy un biólogo colombiano y me dedico desde hace años a las estrategias de conservación…

TiME ∙ Oct 1

12 min read

The Cry of the Jocotoco

In 1997, the ornithologist Dr. Robert Ridgley and his scientific team discovered a new species of bird, until then unknown to science. It is a beautiful, long-legged, land-dwelling bird with a distinct call, from which its name, Jocotoco Antpitta, was derived. Deemed Endangered by the IUCN Red List, the Jocotoco is estimated to have only…

TiME ∙ Sep 12

13 min read

“We should let people understand the true cost of their choices because nobody is paying for the disaster that has been caused”

We had the privilege to hold an interview with Amanda Sturgeon, CEO of Built by Nature and contributing author to All We Can Save (allwecansave.earth), with her, we’ve discussed architecture, sustainability solutions and This is My Earth‘s contribution to nature conservation. How do you define yourself? I’m CEO of Built by Nature. I’m an architect,…

TiME ∙ Aug 28

10 min read

Wildlife trafficking is one of the world’s biggest international crimes

Wildlife trafficking is one of the world’s biggest international crimes Opinion column from Noga Syon - September 2022 (Part 1)

TiME ∙ Aug 28

9 min read

The transfer of animals from one location to another carries diseases, which spread and mutate easily

Wildlife trafficking is one of the world’s biggest international crimes Opinion column from Noga Syon - September 2022 (Part 1)

TiME ∙ Jul 16

3 min read

“If you want the funding you need your followers and fans to vote in your favor”

SAM SHANEE on WHY protect Biodiversity through THIS IS MY EARTH – PART 4/4  What makes This is My Earth so special? This is My Earth’s funding model based on supports through crowdfunding and voting is fairly unique and it helps the people and the organizations like us who are waiting for the funding, to…

TiME ∙ Jul 13

19 min read

“TiME is this little animal running under the nose of more prominent corporations and saving the land before it’s too late”

This is My Earth Interviews artist Tomer Baruch. Hi Tomer! Thanks for your time. Can you please introduce yourself to the This is My Earth community? My name is Tomer, I am a musician, and I’ve created an Instagram account named “Animals and Synthesizers.” In that account, I take animal videos and compose electronic music…

TiME ∙ Jul 11

2 min read

“This is My Earth has been great in securing financing for land purchases”

SAM SHANEE on WHY protect Biodiversity through THIS IS MY EARTH – PART 3/4 How has your experience with This is My Earth been? Over the last few years we’ve worked several times with This is My Earth, they’ve been very great in securing financing for land purchases to extend or to create new land…

TiME ∙ Jul 8

3 min read

“Local communities are, by far, the best allies for nature conservation”

SAM SHANEE on WHY protect Biodiversity through THIS IS MY EARTH – PART 2/4 Neotropical Primate Conservation (NPC) is a registered charity dedicated to the conservation of primates and their habitats in South and Central America. NPC aims to promote conservation and protect biodiversity in the Neotropics by working in several ways. NPC uses monkeys as…

TiME ∙ Jul 8

3 min read

This is My Earth explained in 1 minute

We have created this short video to explained most of the things we do: This is My Earth explained in 1 minute

TiME ∙ Jul 5

3 min read

“Even though there are wild areas with intact forest you can see that some of them don’t have any monkeys left”

SAM SHANEE on WHY protect Biodiversity through THIS IS MY EARTH – PART 1/4 Neotropical Primate Conservation (NPC) is a registered charity dedicated to the conservation of primates and their habitats in South and Central America. NPC aims to promote conservation and protect biodiversity in the Neotropics by working in several ways. NPC uses monkeys…

TiME ∙ Jul 4

6 min read

An electronic music party raises funds for TiME, and ocean animals are the performers

“An organism is an evening dedicated entirely to the seam between the animal and the life. A protected space where algorithms can flourish and animals know how to play.” This is how artist Tomer Baruch introduces the party that will take place on the night of July 4 in Tel Aviv. Co-organized by the good…

TiME ∙ Jun 26

2 min read

Ask This is My Earth for funding: Here is how

This is My Earth is always actively looking for new nature conservation projects that have a key scientific and environmental interest. As you know, ours is a crowdfunding system through which empowered citizens around the world make small (or large) donations, as a gift, individually or in group, and vote on which nature conservation project…

TiME ∙ Jun 22

2 min read

What can YOU do to protect the planet? Join TiME’s team and help us spread the word through a monthly newsletter!

This is My Earth (TiME) is looking for a volunteer to craft their monthly newsletter to members. TiME is a non-profit, international environmental organization that seeks to protect biodiversity by purchasing land for conservation in biodiversity hotspots, in collaboration with local communities and organizations. Join our team and help TiME spread the word about: ·…

TiME ∙ Jun 19

22 min read

“Insects have survived the last five mass extinctions our planet has faced; but this time is different”

Dave Goulson (born 30 July 1965)  is Professor of Biology (Evolution, Behaviour and Environment) at the University of Sussex. Specializing in the ecology and conservation of insects, particularly bumblebees, Goulson is the author of several books, including Bumblebees: Their Behaviour and Ecology (2003), Silent Earth: Averting the Insect Apocalypses (2021), and more than 200 academic articles. In 2006 he founded the Bumblebee Conservation Trust,…

TiME ∙ Jun 14

2 min read

The first international meeting of TiME volunteers puts Communication on the agenda

The first international meeting of volunteers of This is My Earth · TiME was held in virtual format on June 13th. People from all over the world, under the coordination of the organization’s Director of Volunteers, Reut Gilad, contributed their ideas and visions on communication, collaboration and how to grow the conservation project for almost…

TiME ∙ Jun 13

3 min read

We have created This is My Earth’s Annual Report for you

This is My Earth 2021 annual report collects the most relevant milestones achieved by the organization in the fields of conservation and biodiversity. It is open access and contains a fully transparent report.

TiME ∙ May 22

7 min read

𝗕𝘂𝗶𝗹𝗱𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗮 𝗦𝗵𝗮𝗿𝗲𝗱 𝗙𝘂𝘁𝘂𝗿𝗲 𝗙𝗼𝗿 𝗔𝗹𝗹 𝗟𝗶𝗳𝗲: This is our TiME List of protected animals

Since This is My Earth started saving lands in danger in 2016, the list of species and animals that have since been protected has not stopped growing. The international motto chosen for Biodiversity Day 2022 is𝗕𝘂𝗶𝗹𝗱𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗮 𝗦𝗵𝗮𝗿𝗲𝗱 𝗙𝗼𝗿 𝗔𝗹𝗹 𝗟𝗶𝗳𝗲, and its objective is to promote the idea that we are all part of…

TiME ∙ Apr 18

7 min read

Join EARTH DAY global campaign to #InvestInOurPlanet – Download our Action Toolkit!

This is My Earth joins #InvestInOurPlanet campaign on the occasion of the Earth Day 2022 with a video and materials created by our network of volunteers.

TiME ∙ Mar 16

4 min read

Some highlights from the IPCC Climate Report

The Working Group from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) from the United Nations invited TiME · This Is My Earth as a guest organization at the press conference where the 6TH ASSESSMENT REPORT – Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability was presented. On 27 February 2022, this international Working Group from the United Nations finalized…

TiME ∙ Feb 22

7 min read

History of the region’s Cacau-cabruca · Chronicles from Brazil

In 2020, hundreds of volunteers from all over the world helped us save an endangered land in the Sierra Bonita area of ​​Brazil (Google Maps +). Together, through TiME, we raised US$ 148,373 which helped Instituto Uiraçu organization – our partner in the area – to get down to work with the task of preserving…

TiME ∙ Feb 22

9 min read

Biodiversity faces its make-or-break year

The  United Nations decade-old plan to slow down and eventually stop the decline of species and ecosystems by 2020 has failed as most of the plan’s 20 targets have not been met. Among the strategic goals which have not been accomplished, there is the need to address the underlying causes of biodiversity loss by mainstreaming biodiversity…

TiME ∙ Feb 20

3 min read

Scientists map 80% of unknown species

New map shows where the 80% of species we don’t know about may be hiding in the very interesting study "Shortfalls and opportunities in terrestrial vertebrate species".

TiME ∙ Dec 30

9 min read

TiME’s Newsletters

Here you will find links to the 50+ newsletters we have published in recent years. Don’t miss the opportunity, if you haven’t already, to register and receive our emails with our latest updates, news and campaigns in our action of nature protection, education and solidarity. 2021 December 2021 – Let’s go viral September 2021 – Nature based…

TiME ∙ Dec 29

2 min read

The ecological impact of war in Africa

Today’s declining number of large mammals around the world has been explained by many factors, including low reproductive rates, habitat destruction, and overhunting. However, uncertainties about the effects of armed conflict has complicated conservation planning and priority-setting efforts. In the past 70 years, humans have waged war continuously in the world’s most biodiverse regions. Between…

TiME ∙ Nov 30

6 min read

This is My Earth in Kenya with Professor Uri Shanas

The following interview with founder and co-chair Uri Shanas was published in our August 2016 newsletter: Hello, Uri. You’ve recently returned from Kenya. Can you tell us why you went? Kenya is one of the last places on earth where one can experience nature in all its might and beauty, so I was excited to visit TiME’s…

TiME ∙ Nov 29

3 min read

Chatting with Jasmine, a 12-year old TiME supporter

We spoke to Jasmine, daughter of two of TiME’s Board of Directors, Ondine Sherman and Dror Ben-Ami. She recently donated 1800 NIS (about 470 USD) to TiME, nearly a third of the gift money she received for her Bat Mitzvah. First of all, we asked Jasmine to explain a Bat Mitzvah: Jasmine: “In Jewish culture,…

TiME ∙ Nov 28

3 min read

A visit to TiME’s first biodiversity hotspot land purchase

“Please, Nestor, please continue to point out the orchid flowers,” I cried almost breathlessly to the CEO of Neotropical Primate Conservation (NPC) while we climbed up the land TiME had just purchased. “You know we both need these stops so we can catch our breath.” Nestor Allgas and I were trying to keep pace with…

TiME ∙ Nov 25

1 min read

Protecting megafauna and raising money for conservation

This piece was published in our March 2017 newsletter:

TiME ∙ Nov 21

4 min read

Ivory Belongs to Elephants

Since the dawn of humanity, we have been actively fighting nature: drying swamps, cutting down forests, using strong pesticides (such as DDT) and hunting wildlife to extinction (think of the dodo, Tasmanian tiger, passenger pigeon and many, many more). Today, experts believe that we are facing a sixth mass extinction, which is entirely attributable to…

TiME ∙ Nov 20

6 min read

Gold in Africa – an interview with Henry Gold, TiME board member

For TiME’s February 2017 newsletter we interviewed board member Henry Gold, co-founder of Canadian Physician for Aid and Relief (CPAR)and TDA Global Cycling: You worked in Africa for quite a few years. Can you tell us what kind of work you were doing? I’m trained as an engineer, but in 1984 I quit engineering and…

TiME ∙ Oct 2

1 min read

Volunteers meeting – 30 of September

Last 30 of September, TiME’s Israeli volunteers had a get-together in the beautiful Alonei Yitzhak grove. Hopefully more face-to-face meeting will come in the next months in some of the countries of the world where there are This is My Earth‘s volunteers!

Keep up with our news and events

Get news and updates in your inbox

Subscribe to  and get our latest conservation news, project
updates, articles and more in your inbox once a month.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.