This issue's featured photo

A a male blue-gray gnatcatcher feeds a fledgling.
Emma Dampier

As I stepped outside my house one June day, I saw a baby bird fly into the side of a trash can then begin flying in circles, appearing dazed. I went over to help and he was surprisingly calm as I picked him up. The other bird in the photo, presumably his parent, began to call out as I held him. While I was checking to see if the bird was OK, the parent flew over to feed their young. Afterward, I placed the baby bird on a branch and waited with my camera—and sure enough, the parent came back to feed him again. After taking the photo, I waited at a distance to make sure that the baby could fly in a straight line. He flew off with the other bird about 10 minutes later! It was a pretty exhilarating experience.

—Emma Dampier, Hampton, Georgia

John Griffin, HSUS senior director of urban wildlife programs, told us he thinks the larger bird in the photo is a male blue-gray gnatcatcher. These male birds help feed their young. Griffin also reminded us that it’s a myth that birds will abandon their young if they are touched by humans.

Want to know what to do if you encounter a wild animal who appears to be orphaned, injured or in distress? Learn More

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cats licking each other in a pet bed
Rachael Rodgers

Previously featured photos

Pika sitting on rocks with his mouth open.
I live near Mount Evans in Colorado and travel up the mountain several times a summer to enjoy the scenery and watch wildlife. I occasionally see American pikas, but it’s difficult to get a good view of these small and quick animals, who are threatened by our warming climate. I recently discovered a rocky area that appeared to be a pika village. I sat on a rock and waited for the noisy guys to come out of hiding. One perched on a rock and squeaked to warn his neighbors about a nearby weasel. Until I reviewed the photos at home, I had not realized that I’d captured a pika mid-chirp. That was even more exciting!
—Ann Zimmerman, Colorado / Featured in the Winter 2023 issue
Photo of a dog wearing a watermelon bandana sitting on a street in front of colorful houses.
I met Foxy during a trip to Puerto Rico when I was looking for dogs to photograph for my pet photography business. Foxy’s owner, Genesis Jaramillo, reached out to me and I immediately gravitated to the young husky mix’s beautiful aura and her story. She was found after Hurricane Maria hit the city of Toa Alta in 2017 when she was only 2 months old; soon after, she was adopted by her foster family. Photographing Foxy inspired me to create a calendar showcasing the lives of rescued satos (street dogs) in Puerto Rico. Proceeds from the calendar benefit animal shelters on the island. These dogs are a great example of what a street dog can become if given the chance for a better life.
—Carmen Gonzalez, New York / Featured in the Fall 2022 issue
Mother and baby chimps in Gombe Stream National Park in Tanzania
In 2018, I was lucky enough to go on the trip of a lifetime to Gombe Stream National Park in Tanzania, where Jane Goodall observed chimpanzees. Our guide got word that Gremlin, one of the oldest living chimpanzees Goodall observed, had been spotted. At 48 years old, she was still a loving mother and a strong matriarchal figure. We trudged through the jungle to where she sat eating with her latest baby, Grendel. I was struck by how patient and gentle she was with Grendel. I could also tell how much the guides loved and cared about her. It was difficult to take photographs because we watched the chimpanzees from a safe distance, but I was able to capture this beautiful moment. It’s a bookmark in life I will never forget.
—Valerie Howell, Florida / Featured in the Summer 2022 issue
A cute puffin sitting on a rock.
During a trip to Iceland in June of 2016, I visited the remote Látrabjarg sea cliffs—home to millions of birds, including northern gannets, white-tailed eagles and razorbills. But what I most wanted to see were Atlantic puffins, remarkable animals who can dive to depths of 200 feet and steer themselves underwater with their webbed feet. After about an hour of wandering around the cliffs, I began to feel discouraged. Then I saw this beautiful puffin perched on a 1,400-foot cliff overlooking the pounding ocean. As I began photographing him, I was close to tears with feelings of joy and appreciation. I was grateful to be able to see a wild puffin firsthand. Atlantic puffins are vulnerable to extinction and are rare in many areas where they were once abundant.
—Sue Kirchoff, Minnesota / Featured in the Spring 2022 issue

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Cover of All Animals Magazine with a photo of a bison standing in front of mountains.