Shorts Program: Protection & Restoration


Tracking Snow

To estimate the distribution elusive carnivores, researchers rely on finding snow tracks, which often leads to a lot of work without conclusive results. Join two scientists as they repurpose an old technique in a way that may revolutionize how we study threatened species and manage our landscapes. Created during the 2018 International Wildlife Film Festival Filmmaker Labs, this film highlights the importance of conservation through collaboration by bringing together the scientific minds of two distinct branches of the U.S. Forest Service.


Directed by Tanya MartinezJaclyn AlipertiJ.P. Lawrence

(USA, 2018, 5 min.)



Parrots in Peril: Miami’s Wild Macaws

Parrot lover and conservationist Daria Feinstein is on a mission to protect one of Miami’s most spectacular wild residents: the blue-and-yellow macaw (Ara ararauna). Indigenous to Central and South America, these colorful parrots have established a small but well-beloved breeding population in Miami. Today, however, their numbers are crashing as poachers capture the macaws and their chicks for sale into the lucrative pet trade. Florida state law provides no legal protection for these non-native birds, but the state’s wildlife agency considers them “non-invasive” because they don’t seem to compete with or harm native species. Therefore, some municipalities have adopted “bird sanctuary laws” to protect them. How far should we go to protect non-native species, and can Miami’s wild macaws be saved before it’s too late?


Directed by Nathan Dappen & Neil Losin

(USA, 2018, 8 min.)



Great Old Broads for Wolves

Welcome to the Southwest, where the land is wild and the women…might be even wilder. Introducing the Great Old Broads for Wilderness and their fight to keep southwestern Colorado’s wilderness an intact and natural environment. These women have come together to find their voice and now are using it to give these lands a fighting chance.


Produced by Grizzly Creek Films

(USA, 2019, 5 min.)



Cowboys & Scientists

Thirty years ago, a partnership between Archbold Biological Station and Buck Island Ranch inspired a new mission: cowboys and scientists working together to advance scientific discovery on a ten-thousand-acre working cattle ranch. Bridging this cultural divide has resulted in a series of transformative discoveries that have begun to reshape our misconceptions about agriculture, sustainability, and conservation in the 21st century.


Produced by Eric Bendick

(USA, 2018, 8 min.)



The New Way Forward: Wetlands

California’s Chinook salmon population is crashing. Governmental agencies, environmentalists and others are scrambling to find answers to reverse this potentially catastrophic outcome. Meanwhile, there may be a solution just beyond the riverbank. Discover how farmers, scientists, and conservationists are using northern California rice fields to create not only habitat for wild birds but to help save the salmon.


Directed by Rusty Prevatt

(USA, 2019, 10 min.)



Blue Carbon: A Story from the Snohomish Estuary

Blue carbon is carbon that is captured and stored by coastal wetlands, helping to mitigate climate change. This film is about mud and the multiple benefits that estuaries provide for us. “You never go into a wetland and just restore one benefit,” says wetlands ecologist John Rybczyk. It improves water quality, provides salmon habitat, protects our shorelines, and also benefits our climate. Restore America’s Estuaries recently lead a first-of-its-kind study in the Snohomish estuary to quantify the climate benefits of estuary restoration. Set in the Snohomish, this film helps to build awareness of blue carbon as a climate mitigation tool and to encourage more investment in wetland restoration at local, state, and federal levels.


Directed by Benjamin Drummond & Sara Joy Steele

(USA, 2018, 6 min.)



Renewal: Think Like a Scientist

Featuring an emerging young wildlife biologist from the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, this is a heartwarming story of transformation and restoration on Washington State’s Elwha River. This profile of two women in science is part of Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s “Think Like A Scientist” series. It also follows up on the award-winning feature film, Return of the River, which chronicled the largest dam removal in history.


Directed by Jessica Plumb

(USA, 2018, 8 min.)




Discover the daily work, hope, and perspective of one professional female tree-planter in Oregon — from an early start with coffee, through planting countless saplings in the Willamette River Valley with her team, Ash Creek Forest Management. A new analysis says forests are shrinking on state and private land in Oregon, where an estimated 522,000 acres of forest cover have disappeared since 2000. This project was conceived and funded by reforestation nonprofit One Tree Planted.


Directed by Morgan Heim, Jenny Nichols & Allison Otto 

(USA, 2018, 6 min.)



The Last Green Thread

In 2018 three friends set out on an expedition into the most rapidly developing landscape in central Florida, traveling the narrowest and most imperiled wildlife corridor in the state.


Directed by Eric Bendick & Danny Schmidt

(USA, 2018, 18 min.)