Honorary winners of Wildlife Photographer of the Year; The beauties and ugliness of nature

Honorary winners of Wildlife Photographer of the Year; The beauties and ugliness of nature

Honorary Winners Of The 2019 Wildlife Photographer Of The Year Show The Beauty And Ugliness Of Wildlife.

Wildlife Photographer of the Year is a competition started by the Natural History Museum in London and hosts many images from around the world every year. A collection of 15 pictures of the “honorary winners” of the 2019 competitions was published some time ago.

These pictures showed that the photographers who work in this field are competent, and it is difficult to compete with them.

According to Petapixel ‘s report, this contest, which is in its 55th year, has received about 50,000 entries from photographers from 100 different countries. Every year, the exhibition of the winners’ pictures is opened in the said museum.

In the following, you can see 15 attractive images submitted for this contest, which are contenders for the wildlife photographer of the year. At the bottom of each image, there is a description of it.

Honorary winner of the young wildlife photographer: 11-14 years old

By Carlos Pérez Novel

When the Carlos family planned a trip to Panama’s Soberanía National Park, seeing sloths was high on their agenda. They were not disappointed to find and observe this cute animal. Carlos could photograph the birds and this brown-throated three-toed sloth for several days from a vantage point in the park’s canopy tower. The orange fur and dark stripe on the back of this animal is the mark that identifies it as an adult male. This lazy bear was hanging from the cecropia tree and was resting, But sometimes it moved slowly along the branch to reach the new leaves.

That morning, while the fog filled the forest, Carlos saw a moving sloth bear and decided to capture the moment with a new composition. He lowered himself to a lower level to capture a unique angle of the animal. Still, Carlos also made sure that the sloth’s essential features, including its hook-like hands, long fur, and eye rings, were visible. . By deliberately placing the lazy bear in the corner of the frame, this young photographer was able to capture the atmosphere of the forest successfully.

Honorable Mention for Behavior: Mammals

By Adrian Hirschy

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

A newborn hippo, only a few days old, was near its mother in the shallows of Lake Kariba in Zimbabwe when a large male suddenly attacked them. The creature followed the mother, then grabbed the newborn animal in its vast mouth, clearly intending to kill it. After trying to drown this small animal, he wanted to crush it in his mouth. All this time, the mother was anxiously looking at this scene.

Adrian managed to capture the moving drama with his quick reaction. Infanticide is rare among hippos, But it may be caused by the stress of overcrowding when their day rests dry up. Hippos are very protective of their living area and are fierce in this regard; As a result, bloody battles between them are not unusual. If they feel threatened by a creature, they will attack. Hippos also attack and kill humans. A male may increase his reproductive chances by killing young that do not belong to him, encouraging females to mate with him.

Honorary winner of the black and white section

By Alex Mustard

In the clear water of the Red Sea, a school of fish swims in circles in an extraordinary way 25 meters below the edge of a cliff. The name of this place, which is a national park at the end of Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula for spawning reef fish, is Ras Mohammad, and Alex has traveled here many times over the past 20 years. He says:

I always see new things in this place. This time it was time to see a lot of bigeye fish.

Using a 130-degree angle lens, Alex managed to record the ring of these fish against the deep blue water, reflecting the sunlight and his strobes. Their ring behavior is a pre-mating courtship exercise. Of course, this behavior can prevent them from being killed by hunters. In general, gathering such fish quickly becomes prey for fishermen. But this will not happen in this place; Because the mentioned national park is an area with no fishing.

Honorable Mention for Behavior: Birds

Effect Dayana Rabman

Diana faced a beautiful and delightful scene on one frigid morning on the Japanese island of Hokkaido. A group of long-tailed tit and marsh tit had gathered around a lamprey hanging from a branch, taking turns pecking at it. In this image, a Hokkaido long-tailed tit hangs in the air for a second before it gets its turn to peck at the kandil. If the sun comes out and a drop of water forms from this jellyfish, the next bird in line will drink it instead of pecking at it. According to the photographer, doing this activity and turning was done so quickly that it almost seemed like someone had designed the whole process.

Two days later, Diana returned and found that with the temperature minus 20 degrees Celsius, the said candle was still there, and the sites were still drinking from it. But when the sun came out, and the ice began to melt, a long-tailed tit chose to stick to it rather than fly around it. This made the process end quickly; Because Qandeel cracked and fell to the ground.

Honorable Mention for Behavior: Mammals

By Eduardo del Alamo

A gentoo penguin, considered the fastest underwater swimmer among other species, is running away from the jaws of a leopard that has come out of the water and is chasing him. Eduardo expected this to happen. He spotted the penguin while resting on a piece of ice and watched it for a while. But he had also seen a leopard jaw patrolling the coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, near where Gento lives on Coverville Island. As Eduardo walked towards the penguin, the jaw passed directly under his boat, and moments later, it popped out of the water with its mouth open. The penguin was able to get out of the water, But this jaw seemed to make hunting it a game.

Leopard jaws are ferocious and terrifying predators. Their slender bodies are built for speed. The length of females can reach 3.5 meters, and their weight can be more than 500 kg; Of course, males are a little smaller. The wide jaws of this Mojave contain long and sharp fangs that can tear the body of any prey. They hunt almost anything; From fish to children, other types of jaws can make up the varied food menu of this creature. These creatures play with their prey; for example, this leopard jaw chased a penguin for more than 15 minutes before finally biting it.

 Honorary winner of the underwater division

The work of Fabian Mishneh

A juvenile jackfish peeks out from inside a tiny jellyfish off Tahiti in French Polynesia. This jackfish went inside the jellyfish to protect the stinging tentacles of the jellyfish from being harmed by predators. While there is nowhere to hide in the open ocean, this creature has taken the jellyfish as an overnight travel haven.

Fabian says:

I have never seen one without the other in my hundreds of night dives.

It is unclear whether this jellyfish is useful or why their relationship is destroyed as the water becomes acidic. Diving in deep and dark waters is Fabin’s specialty; For example, this photo was recorded at a depth of 20 meters. Zooplankton migrates from the deep, dark waters to feed on surface-dwelling phytoplankton (which require sunlight) and are then approached by predators. Fabin has combined attractive elements in his image at the right moment, and this work of art has been recorded.

 Honorary winner of plants and mushrooms

By Frank Deschandol

During a night trip in the Peruvian Amazon rainforest, Frank noticed this strange-looking weevil clinging to the stem of a fern. Its shiny eyes showed it was dead, and three antennae-like mushrooms grew from its chest, so-called “zombie mushrooms.” This type of parasitic fungus grew inside the louse while it was alive and, after some time, took control of the muscles. This fungus has forced the weevil to reach this plant’s top. When the organism has reached a suitable height for mushroom growth, the aphid is firmly attached to the plant.

At this stage, the parasitic fungus feeds on the internal components of the weevil and creates capsules full of many tiny spores to infect new prey, which it can use to continue its generation. “Zombie mushrooms” are famous for living parasitically inside the bodies of insects.

Frank has paired the subject with a blurred background to show the weevil’s elongated snout and capsules filled with zombie mushroom spores. According to this photographer, the next day, the spores were free, the mushroom was dry, and the mission was accomplished.

 Honorary winner of the urban wildlife department

By Jason Bantel

In this picture, a raccoon, always trying to adapt to the environment, pokes its head out of a 1970 Ford Pinto on an abandoned farm in Saskatchewan, Canada. In the back seat, its five playful cubs play excitedly. This was the sentiment released by Jason. He was hiding in an area without sound when recording this picture and had waited for several years to take such a picture. The only way to enter this car is through a small hole in the windshield. This gap is so small that no coyote can enter the vehicle; Coyotes are the main predators of raccoons in the region. That was reason enough for this mother raccoon to find the old Ford an ideal place to have a few cubs.

On the evening this image was captured, the raccoon was poking its head out of the hole to survey its surroundings. The movement of this creature was enough for Jason to take such a photo. After taking this photo, the raccoon came out of its hiding place to spend the night hunting. From fruits, nuts, and bird eggs to invertebrates and small vertebrates, they make up the food of this animal.

 Honorary winner of wildlife news photography

By Jo Ann MacArthur

Rattlesnake skins are pinned to the wall, and traces of bloody hands can be seen around them. They are the triumphant signs of those who attend the annual Marzengi Gathering in Sweetwater, Texas.

Every year, tens of thousands of rattlesnakes are trapped for this four-day festival. In the spring, gasoline is used to lure snakes out of their winter burrows. Now, this festival is banned in many American states.

Before they are brought to this festival, the rattlesnakes are kept in poor conditions. They are then killed for the entertainment of the contestants who pay to skin them.

Proponents of the mass movement claim that doing so is to control the population of venomous snakes to ensure the safety of people, pets, and livestock. But the opponents deny this practice and consider it harmful to the environment and inhumane. According to Jo Ann, the most disturbing thing about the image was that many of the bloody handprints on the skins belonged to children.

Honorary winner of plants and mushrooms

By Michel Rogo

The slender stems of the Eurasian thousand-leaved aquatic plant, which has beautiful soft leaves, reach the sky from the bed of Lake Neuchâtel in Switzerland. Michelle has photographed freshwater areas worldwide, But this was his first time diving in the lake near his home. He was swimming near the surface when he was fascinated by the beauty of the plants and the small reddish flowers. After some time, he noticed a mass of plants disappearing under the water. Michelle slowly sank deeper into the water. When he reached a relatively deep place, he found himself in an underwater forest with an overwhelming view.

Aquatic marigold is native to Europe, Asia, and North Africa, But it is found worldwide. This plant can grow even from its small pieces and is easily transplantable. The mentioned plant multiplies quickly in lakes, ponds, and calm waters, surpassing native species with dense growth. When Michelle examined the stems, she noticed that some supported large clusters of black zebra mussels. These small mollusks originate from Russia and Ukraine and are spread by boats in various glasses of water. Most of them can be found in Western Europe and North America. Feeding these organisms significantly reduces plankton density and increases water clarity.

Michel created this work while carefully diving in this underwater forest. To convey the feeling of staring from the floor of the blue forest through the many trees, he has recorded this photo in wide-angle mode.

 Honorable Mention for Behavior: Invertebrates

By Mingus Yuan

The photographer of this artwork focused on the beautiful cocoon of a Cyna butterfly pupa while capturing it. A typical place for this creature is similar to a tree trunk or a rock, Like the Shishuangbana rainforests in southwest China, where Mingwei was shooting. But this silkworm had chosen a wall to cocoon. This creature had built a delicate cocoon cage, which was only 4 cm long.

This cocoon should be able to protect the pupa against some predators, But probably not resistant to parasitic bees. When the silkworm is making a cocoon, it pulls out silk from its mouth to produce almost invisible threads for itself to use to suspend itself.

 Honorable Mention for Behavior: Mammals

By Peter Haygarth

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

In a rare encounter, a male cheetah is alone, surrounded by a herd of African wild dogs. Both species have disappeared from most of their former ranges, and less than 7,000 of them remain, mainly due to habitat loss. The biological density of both species has decreased significantly compared to before.

Peter was following these dogs in the Zimanga Conservation Area of ​​KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa when he recorded this image. A wild boar had escaped from its herd when the wild dogs confronted this big cat. At first, the dogs were cautious; But when the rest of the group of 12 members arrived, their confidence increased, and they began to surround the cheetah. They howled with excitement as they did so. The old cheetah, whose left ear was torn off, makes noises to scare the dogs. Peter captured this image by focusing on the big cat’s face as the wild dogs kicked up the dust. Within a few minutes, the conflict ended with the cheetah running away.

 Honorary winner of the black and white section

By Ralph Schneider

Fak Wedel seems to be holding something tightly in his arms in this picture and has fallen into a deep sleep. Leopard jaws and killer whales are the predators of this animal. Lying on a piece of ice attached to land in South Georgia’s Larsen Harbor, the animal is relatively safe from predators and can safely rest and digest food.

Weddell’s jaws are mammals that live in coastal habitats around the continent of Antarctica. Their length reaches up to 3.5 meters, and the females of this species are somewhat more significant than the males. Their large bodies are covered in a thick layer of fat to keep this animal warm above and below the icy waters of the Southern Ocean. This species of jaws, which feed on large fish, are skilled divers and can swim to a depth of 500 meters with large reserves of the oxygen-binding protein myoglobin in their muscles.

When capturing this image of Sleepy Jaws on his inflatable boat, Ralph used an icy white background and soft skylight to mimic the effect of studio portraits. After he converted the recorded photo to a black-and-white sample, the tonality and texture of the mottled fur on the jaw became more visible.

Honorary winner of wildlife news photography

By Matthew Warr

From a distance, the beach at Alabama’s Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge looked inviting; Blue sky, soft sand, and a sea turtle resting on the side. But the closer Mito and his patrol team got to the turtle, the more details of the animal’s condition became apparent. After some time, they realized that the creature’s neck was stuck in a noose attached to a beach chair.

With a size of about 65 cm, this species is not only one of the smallest sea turtles, but the generation of this creature is more endangered than others. Over 50 years, human activities have significantly reduced their numbers, from consuming eggs and meat to bycatch in fishing nets. Today, despite a protected area along the west coast of the Gulf of Mexico and the requirement to observe all the essential points to preserve them, the generation of this turtle species is still threatened.

But as Mito observed, another threat to these creatures is the sheer volume of discarded fishing gear and trash in the oceans, causing injury or death to marine animals.

Honorary winner of wildlife news photography

By Thomas P. Pesek

In this picture, a curious young gray whale can be seen approaching the hands of a person who entered the water from a tourist boat. In the lagoon of San Ignacio, located on the Baja California coast of Mexico, baby gray whales and their mothers come to human hands; They easily let you touch their head or back. This lagoon is one of the three designated places for gray whales to give birth and shelter.

The site is a crucial breeding ground for the endangered eastern gray whales of the North Pacific. Whaling has decimated the western population of these creatures and completely wiped out those that once lived in the North Atlantic. These attacks can even cause whales to behave aggressively towards boats. Because of this incident, fishermen in San Ignacio were afraid of fishing for a long time.

But in the 1970s, a young whale approached a fisherman who dared to reach out and touch it. Since then, trust between whales and humans has grown, and today many females actively encourage newborn whales to interact with people. The fishermen also earn good money in winter when many people come to watch and touch the whales.

In San Ignacio Lagoon, a World Heritage Site, whale watching is carefully managed. Boats are limited, there is no fishing in the winter, and interaction is only possible when the whales choose a person. A few years ago, the people who were managing this sector, with international support, after a long battle, managed to stop one of the factories that could harm this ecosystem.

Veteran photographer and biologist Thomas P. Peske admits that for the first time, he saw a whale begging for a pet at a distance, allowing for the perfect focus to capture the moment.


What do you think about the pictures of the honorary winners of this competition? Which image did you like the most?