JEN Parker, owner of Wild Lines, has had her pen drawing, ‘The Prodigy’, has been shortlisted by the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation judges for Wildlife Artist of the Year 2021, in association with BBC Wildlife Magazine.

The selected piece features a charming young Brazilian tapir. As ecological engineers, tapirs change the structure of plant communities and play an important role in dispersing seeds over long distances.

Today, three species of tapir live in South America and one in Asia. Populations of each species have reduced by more than 30 percent over the last 30 years or so – a minuscule proportion of their 20-million-year history.

Jen said: “I am delighted to have been chosen as a finalist for the renowned competition, which always features an amazing variety of work.

"There were more than 2,300 entries this year; I am humbled to know my tapir will be part of the exhibition and support wildlife conservation initiatives across Africa and Asia.

Isle of Wight County Press: Jen Parker's pen drawing, ‘The Prodigy.’Jen Parker's pen drawing, ‘The Prodigy.’

"I see the juvenile tapir as a symbol of optimism for wildlife in a world in crisis. Now more than ever, we need hope we can protect and restore our natural world.

"I hope that the sparkle in his eye is passed on to the viewer as we look towards a bright and biodiverse future.”

Jen, who is based in Newport, launched Wild Lines in September 2019. With a background in zoology and wildlife conservation, she is passionate about the natural world.

By sharing optimistic conservation stories alongside original illustrations, Jen hopes to foster a sense of connection with the natural world.

The Wildlife Artist of the Year Virtual Award Ceremony to announce the winners of this year's competition will take place on Tuesday May 25 from 7pm.

To stay up to date with The Prodigy’s journey, you can follow Wild Lines on Instagram or Facebook.