As one of the top young wildlife photographers in the world, Morristown-Beard School 9th grader Ashleigh Scully uses her talent to help educate people about the importance of conservation and environmentalism.
On October 3rd, 14-year old Ashleigh and her mentor, renowned wildlife photographer Melissa Groo, delivered a lecture, “In Praise of Wild Canids and Felids: Photographic Stories from the Field,” at the 500-seat Center Theater in Jackson, Wyoming.
Ashleigh, who considers Jackson Hole to be her “home away from home,” spoke about her experiences photographing foxes and mountain lions, while Melissa Groo focused on coyotes and bobcats. The lecture was sponsored by Wyoming Untrapped, a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a safe and humane environment for people, pets and wildlife through education and trapping regulation reform.
Ashleigh hopes that her images and stories will help provide a much-needed voice to wildlife, and will inspire others to have empathy for our world’s wild creatures.
Last year, Ashleigh was selected as one of five Finalists worldwide for the Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. Her photo of a screech owl (which was on display at The Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C.) earned her first place in the Por el Planeta International Photography Competition in Mexico City.
She was recently named a semifinalist in the Nature’s Best Windland Smith Rice International Photography Awards, a Top 100 honoree in the Audubon Photography Competition, and first place winner of the Yellowstone Forever Photo Competition in the “Youth Landscapes” category.
Ashleigh has loved wildlife photography since she was 8 years old. Her favorite places for photographing animals are her back yard, Florida, Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park. She especially enjoys taking pictures of owls and red foxes, and is looking forward to a two-week photography excursion to Tanzania in the coming year.