January-February 2011 | TREASURES OF THE SHORE

TREASURES OF THE SHORE
Kevin FlemingTREASURES OF THE SHORETREASURES OF THE SHORETREASURES OF THE SHORETREASURES OF THE SHORETREASURES OF THE SHORETREASURES OF THE SHORETREASURES OF THE SHORETREASURES OF THE SHORETREASURES OF THE SHORE

OUTWARD BOUND

TREASURES OF THE SHORE

Photographer Kevin Fleming captured remarkable elements of local wildlife in his latest book

Several years ago, photographer Kevin Fleming attended a public hearing where he learned of three potential developments that would have brought more than 1,000 new homes to the doorstep of his Kent County farm – bulldozing 900 acres of undeveloped land in the process. After no one raised a single question concerning the potential environmental impacts, Kevin left determined to document the natural hidden treasures of Delaware.  

In 2008, Wild Delaware was released and quickly sold more copies than Harry Potter books in the First State. Fleming’s latest book, Wild Delmarva, features 240 pages of wildlife and wild places from across the Eastern Shore.  

“My intention with both books has been to educate people about wildlife and the wild places that are right outside their backdoors,” said Fleming. “If you don’t know about it, you can’t love it. And if you don’t love it, you can’t fight to preserve it.”

Kevin dedicated more than a year and a half traveling the Delmarva Peninsula, waiting for rare moments to capture photographs of the wild in their natural environment. He spent most mornings, starting at 4:30 a.m., in his boat to take advantage of the best light of the day.  

“With about 200 days of good light in a year, I probably spent close to 1,400 hours in wetlands and in the woods doing what I love most,” said Fleming. “Most of the time my photographs are found. But I never disregard a call from a friend or follower reporting an interesting photographic opportunity.”

Written in the first-person, Kevin collaborated with several writers to educate readers about each species by providing them with a historical look at the environmental landscape and mating and migrating trends.

Professor and writer Tom Horton, a native of the Eastern Shore of Maryland, crafted the foreword for Wild Delmarva, which speaks to the history and treasures the shorelines, waterways, farmlands and forests hold.

“It means that, as both Fleming and I have done many times, one can walk dozens of miles of Delaware Bay beach on the full moon in May and watch spawning horseshoe crabs scrabble from the water until they pave the beach like cobblestones as
far as the eye can see. Such evenings are ancient and elemental beyond any other experience of this earth: only moon and sand, and the lap of water and the scratch of shell on shell among creatures that were doing this when dinosaurs were still more than 100 million years in the future; it is the closest one can come to re-entering primordial time.”

An environmental writer for the Baltimore Sun for more than 30 years, Horton now teaches at Salisbury University and has authored several books on the Chesapeake, including Bay Country, An Island Out of Time, Turning the Tide and Water’s Way.  
Derek Stoner, of the Delaware Nature Society’s Nature Guide, penned a chapter on Assateague Island. Jeffrey A. Gordon, tour leader and speaker at birding festivals across North America, reveals 10 great birding trips on the Peninsula. Jim White, of the Delaware Nature Society, wrote a chapter on reptiles and how hidden creatures remain hidden.

Wild Delmarva (Portfolio Books, $50) can be purchased online, with free shipping, at www.wilddelmarva.com and at bookstores across the Eastern Shore. The first 1,000 books sold will be autographed and $1 from every purchase benefits the Chesapeake
Bay Foundation.  
 

  


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