On one chilly morning in early January, I decided to look at a map, point to a random town, and take a train there. My mystery destination: Orbetello, Italy. A couple of hours later, the train pulled up into an old pink building that looked like it used to be a house for a family with five or six kids. This definitely wasn’t one of the big city adventures I was used to.
Having nothing better to do, I just headed out and started walking. About ten minutes into my wandering, I noticed a large body of water with hundreds of pale pink birds lounging around. I was too far away to tell what type of bird they were, so I took out my camera and zoomed in as far as it would go. The pale pink birds slowly got clearer and clearer, revealing their tall, thin legs and long, curved necks – there were hundreds and hundreds of flamingos!
It turns out these flamingos were living in a nature reserve known as Laguna di Orbetello. Like the rest of the animal kingdom, these flamingos’ habitats have been destroyed by humans. Flamingos tend to live in environments rich in nitrates, potassium, lithium, and boron; therefore, these environments are also very attractive to mining companies. Without qualms, these companies come in, collect these natural resources, and replace them with harmful pollutants, forcing these flamingos to attempt to find new places to live.
Wild Ark aims to protect the areas of the world rich in biodiversity, in order to take care of the earth’s wildlife. Their goal is to make sure that animals around the world, including the flamingos of Orbetello, have safe, healthy habitats for them to live in. They seek to educate people through experience by showing them the beauty of the earth’s creatures in their natural environments. Through their efforts, they hope that the animals of the world will be able to live out their lives without the interference of humans, just as they were meant to.