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Filling the Well, One Photograph at a Time

From now through the Virtual Crane Fiesta 30% of your purchases from Hope Has Feathers GalleryTM will be donated to Friends of Bosque del Apache, a nonprofit working to save a world-renowned desert oasis from unprecedented drought*

Over several weeks photographing the Bosque del Apache, I fell deeply in love with its wondrous landscapes and the enchanting creatures who call it home. Although they call this place a wildlife refuge, it has become a destination of deep healing, creativity, and solace.

If only I could bottle up the ancient echoes of the sandhill cranes gurgling as they swoop over rusting fields of sunflowers, or somehow capture the way my heart leaps right through my chest, ascending with a joyful chorus of snow geese on winter mornings! One must awaken early to bear witness to the dawn glimmering through the clouds and see how the light is kissed back by the desert's listening ponds. The sights, the smells of mesquite and dust carried on the desert wind – how could this not be a wetland refuge for this artist's heart? 

I know I'm not alone in the wonder ignited by this sacred and scarce resource – over 300,000 of us flocked to the refuge last year alone! Truly, the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge is a well that overflows with wonder for all beings – including the most baffling species of all, us. 

“the world offers itself to your imagination”


Scroll to Hope Has Feathers Gallery Now 


The River That Runs Through is Dry*

This spring, the Rio Grande, the river whose water supply is key to the survival of this fragile oasis, ran dry north of the refuge – a water crisis which has persisted for a staggering six months, marking the worst drought since the 1950's. As a result, there is no way all the refuge wetlands can be filled this season – there simply isn't enough water to fill them! 

To make matters worse, New Mexico has entered a La Niña weather pattern which will continue to bring hotter and drier conditions over the coming year, further placing the refuge at serious risk. The Bosque del Apache needs our help repairing and replacing failing wells - many were installed 70 years ago. 

It's likely there isn't a single person reading this who lacks empathy for our cherished landscapes in crisis. I suspect the well of your compassion is as deep as it is wide – so wide, you probably couldn't wrap your arms around it if you tried. I've often felt powerless, not knowing what concrete action I can take that will truly make a difference, as a part of a community I can trust – I've found one: 


Filling The WELL

Please partner with me in filling The WELL, a community of HOPE created on behalf of the Bosque del Apache. Again, from now through the Virtual Crane Fiesta on November 21st, 30% of the sales from photographs in this gallery will be donated to Friends of Bosque del Apache Wildlife Refuge**! Please join a community of HOPE in saving this world-renowned birding and wildlife destination at this critical time... 

“Hope” is the thing with feathers - 

That perches in the soul, 

And sings the tune without words – 

And never stops - at all 



*30% of your cart total – noninclusive of tax and shipping – will be donated to Friends of Bosque del Apache within two weeks of the last day of the month your order is completed. This is not an ambiguous percentage of profit - you will know exactly how much. 

**Friends of Bosque del Apache is a non-profit whose mission is to support the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in San Antonio, New Mexico. Visit their site and find out how you can support them directly. 

If you have any questions please contact Susan J. Preston, photographer and professional marketing strategist, and web designer.


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