Fundraising to empower the next generation of natural world storytellers

The Story Behind our Limited-Edition Tee: Frogs and Butterflies

08 April 2021 | Wildscreen

Here at Wildscreen, we endeavour to inspire the wider public to connect with all things wild by convening natural world filmmakers, photographers and conservationists. As part of the 2021 Togetherness campaign, we are raising funds for our Emerging Talent scheme, which aims to alleviate barriers to entry of underrepresented groups into the natural history industry, ensuring every voice has the opportunity to be heard.

To raise funds for this campaign, we have collaborated with the fantastic Tom Abbiss Smith to roll out a limited-edition contemporary T-shirt featuring two remarkable endangered species: the lemur leaf frog and the small tortoiseshell butterfly.

“When I first chatted to the Wildscreen team about the project I was super excited because animals/nature are a huge inspiration for my work and this was a great opportunity for me to explore a more illustrative approach to my design. Nature is so important and looking after planet Earth should be everyone's top priority! No one can deny that the climate crisis is very real and supporting organisations such as Wildscreen is that step in the right direction!” - Tom Abbiss Smith

Why frogs and butterflies?

The lemur leaf frog is a tiny, enigmatic amphibian, around half the size of your pinkie finger. Bizarrely, these frogs can change colour from a reddish-brown to bright green depending on their activity. Unfortunately, not only are our little lemur leaf frogs under threat from habitat loss, but a deadly fungal virus, intensified by climate change, is spreading through amphibian populations. They are under such a threat that the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has given the species a red-list status, outlining them as critically endangered.

We can find the small tortoiseshell butterfly a little closer to home. These striking species are a sure sign that spring has arrived here in the UK, being one of the first butterflies to emerge after winter. Sadly, despite formerly being one of the most common species in the UK, numbers have decreased by 78% since the 1970s with threats including climate change and pesticide use.

These two threatened species fit perfectly within our Togetherness campaign. They are connected by shared threats, both having been seriously impacted by environmental issues, and people are working hard to protect them. By creating a platform for natural history storytellers to connect, Wildscreen aids the conservation of critically endangered species such as the lemur leaf frog and small tortoiseshell butterfly by spreading awareness of their plight.

Conserving species whilst diversifying the natural history industry

As well as spreading awareness of the issues threatened species face, our tees are Earth Positive; vegan, Fair Wear and Climate Neutral. In addition to this, all profits will go towards our Emerging Talent scheme to empower underrepresented groups entering the wildlife film industry. Excitingly, the Big Give Green Match Fund will match any profits raised through our t-shirt campaign, meaning every 2 t-shirts sold provides 3 free places on the scheme with priority to individuals from underrepresented groups.

So, not only are our t-shirts designed by a fantastic, environmentally conscious artist, but they support conservation and diversity in the wildlife film industry. To order your limited-edition Tom Abbiss Smith X Wildscreen Tee now, visit:

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If you’re looking for information about a species, try National Geographic Photo Ark or IUCN Red List