Teachers and students across the state are invited to celebrate wildlife through art by participating in the 34th annual Give Wildlife a Chance Poster Contest.
The goal of this competition for grades K-5 is to generate knowledge of and appreciation for Georgia’s biological diversity. The popular initiative is sponsored by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, the State Botanical Garden of Georgia and The Environmental Resources Network, or TERN, friends group of DNR’s Wildlife Conservation Section.
The 2023-2024 theme – What’s That? Habitat! – highlights the natural resources that make up a plant or animal’s home. This home is called a habitat, and it’s where they can find everything needed for survival such as food, water, shelter and space. Some wildlife, such as raccoons, cardinals and mosquitofish, are very adaptable and can live in a variety of habitats. Others, such as bog turtles, gopher frogs and shoals spider-lily, require specific habitat types to thrive, so these species can only be found in certain areas. Habitats filled with native plants (either in the wilderness or in your backyard) attract more wildlife because they offer nutritious foods that insects and animals like and are used to eating.
As inspiration for their artwork, students can observe birds and other wildlife in their backyard or schoolyard to see how they interact with their environment. Even if neighborhood greenspace is scarce, a world of insects and plants can still be found nearby. City, county and state parks are great places to discover nature, too.
After creating artwork based on this year’s theme and according to contest rules, participants will enter their drawings and paintings at the local school level. Top school-level entries then proceed to the state contest at the State Botanical Garden of Georgia in Athens. First-, second- and third-place winners will be chosen for four divisions: kindergarten, first and second grade, third and fourth grade, and fifth grade. The deadline for schools to submit digital photos of state-level entries is March 8, 2024.
The top 12 state-level winners’ artwork will be showcased on DNR Wildlife Resources Division and State Botanical Garden social media sites. Also, as a special perk, each state-level winner’s teacher and one parent will be eligible to receive a free DNR wildlife license plate, courtesy of TERN. For contest rules, awards, entry forms and other information, visit georgiawildlife.com/PosterContest.
DNR’s Wildlife Conservation Section is charged with conserving animals that aren’t legally fished for or hunted, plus native plants and natural habitats. Only a deep commitment to these natural resources will ensure their existence for future generations. The Wildlife Conservation Section depends primarily on fundraisers such as sales of eagle and monarch butterfly license plates, the annual renewal of those and other wildlife tags (such as the hummingbird design), the Give Wildlife a Chance state income tax checkoff and direct donations (georgiawildlife.com/donations).
Learn more at georgiawildlife.com/about/what-we-do, or call Wildlife Conservation Section offices in Social Circle (706-557-3213), Forsyth (478-994-1438) or Brunswick (912-264-7218).
GIVE WILDLIFE A CHANCE POSTER CONTEST
- Theme: What’s That? Habitat!
- Emphasis: Generate knowledge of and appreciation for Georgia wildlife and their habitats.
- Teacher instructions: Have students design artwork based on the theme that includes native wildlife – animals, plants or both. Hold a school-level contest. First-place winners in each age division advance to the state-level contest.
- Deadline for state-level contest entries: March 8, 2024.
- Top 12 state-level winners’ artwork will be showcased on DNR Wildlife Resources Division and State Botanical Garden of Georgia social media sites.
- Details: georgiawildlife.com/PosterContest