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Hendricks captures ‘Natural Wonders’ of Assateague Is.

By Kara Hallissey | Jul 13, 2017
Photo by: Kara Hallissey In “Natural Wonders of Assateague Island,” readers can appreciate 198 images taken by author Mark Hendricks along with a written history on the island and information about its biodiversity pertaining to animals and plants.

(July 14, 2017) For the last seven years, wildlife photographer Mark Hendricks has been capturing images on Assateague Island, from the snowy owl and seaside grasshopper to the beaches and inland forests, throughout all seasons in Maryland and Virginia.

In “Natural Wonders of Assateague Island,” readers can appreciate 198 images taken by Hendricks along with a written history of the island and information about its biodiversity pertaining to animals and plants. In addition, four chapters depict his journey including the tracking and photographing tales of four elusive species to the island: the river otter, snowy owl, black stallion and piping plover.

“When people think of Assateague Island, they think horses, or it’s a vacation spot,” Hendricks said. “There is so much more. It’s a biodiverse region and a pristine barrier island. I’ve been documenting Assateague Island for a long time.”

The conservation-based book also encourages readers to clean up after themselves, slow down when driving, appreciate nature from afar and to be conservation-minded in regards to behavior, he said.

“What makes Assateague cool is it has all of these intact ecosystems,” Hendricks said. “The beach, dunes, maritime forest and marsh. The bays and ocean surround it. Each ecosystem has a unique flavor to it with different animals.”

About 40 percent of content for the 144-page book was created in 2016, although the oldest image is seven years old and plenty were taken in between that time.

“Most people don’t know and are shocked [Assateague] has so much life,” Hendricks said. “I wanted to tell a complete story of the pristine barrier island and show it in a different light. It’s so cool and I want people to appreciate that we have this awesome place. Come and treat it well.”

Hendricks, 34, of Baltimore, who has taken hundreds of trips to Assateague Island since he was 5 years old, has written for wildlife magazines in addition to giving talks and lectures.

Growing up in Baltimore, he always appreciated trips to the park and loved being around animals.

“Natural Wonders of Assateague Island” was published on June 28 and autographed copies are available on his website, www.markhendricksphoto.com, for $24.99.

“I wanted to do a book project,” Hendricks said. “Schiffer Publishing decided to support the project and we signed a contract near the end of 2015.”

The hard cover book is also available on Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com and in independent book stores including Sundial Books on Chincoteague Island, Virginia.

Hendricks will have two book signings at Sundial Books on Tuesday, July 25, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Friday, July 28 from 2-4 p.m.

“The book shows Assateague in its most complete form, and how you can see things from the road and beach,” he said. “It reminds people to slow down and take things in. Assateague is a place where you take the time to appreciate it and treat it well.”

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