Saving Elephants photo book aims to protect world's largest walking animals

Grayscale photo from Saving Elephants photo book image by Alwyn Coates
(Image credit: Alwyn Coates)

A stunning photographic collection of images by photographer Alwyn Coates will feature in a new photo book 'Saving Elephants'. The book has been 15 years in the making, capturing an honest image of the soul and personality of one of the most loved animals in their natural states. We see elephants in the book playing, tussling, fighting, feeding and lovingly caring for each other. 

The Born Free Foundation (opens in new tab) is behind the creation of the book with the entire 100% of profits from sales going towards the charity's 'Saving Meru's Giants' project, an initiative designed to safeguard the future of the Kenyan elephant.

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Born Free was founded by wildlife campaigner and actress Virginia McKenna, husband Bill Travers (MBE), and son Will Travers (OBE), after they starred in the leading roles in the box office hit movie Born Free (1966).  The film describes the life of George and his wife Joy, who rescued, cared for and released lioness Elsa, capturing hearts across the globe.

Virginia Mckenna OBE shares "We need to realize how lucky we are to still live in a world with wild elephants. Alwyn's wonderful book, Saving Elephants, reminds us why we need to do all we can to make sure wild elephants survive and thrive long into the future." 

(Image credit: Alwyn Coates)
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Not long ago, we had over five million elephants walking the earth, 100 years later we have seen an enormous decline to the elephant population with census estimating we now have less than 400,000 of the large mammals left. Sadly, more elephants are killed in today's climate than are born, primarily through poaching. 

The Great Elephant Census conducted in 2016, using aerial survey technology, produced a report (opens in new tab) that concludes an 8% drop in elephant population occurs each year, continent-wide. It's also said that every 15 minutes, an elephant dies.

(Image credit: Alwyn Coates)
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(Image credit: Alwyn Coates)
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(Image credit: Alwyn Coates)
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This only further establishes the value of this photo book and the significantly important work carried out by the Born Free Foundation and Alwyn Coates. Will Travers regarding 'Saving Elephants' shares: "Alwyn reminds us that in our world of turmoil and haste and rush and uncertainty, we must make room for miracles – and one of them is the elephant, wild and free.”

Over 75 black and white photographs will feature in the book, with prices starting at approximately $85 / £65 / AU$120 (excluding shipping). The photo book, including the option to purchase a copy signed by Alwyn Coates, is available to buy now from (opens in new tab).

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Beth Nicholls
Staff Writer

A staff writer for Digital Camera World, Beth has an extensive background in various elements of technology with five years of experience working as a tester and sales assistant for CeX. After completing a degree in Music Journalism, followed by obtaining a Master's degree in Photography awarded by the University of Brighton, she spends her time outside of DCW as a freelance photographer specialising in live music events and band press shots under the alias 'bethshootsbands'.