The 2015 Wildlife Photographer of The Year Awards took place at London’s Natural History Museum on October 16th, and we were truly awed!
Fortunately, images from various finalists were released just at the right time, giving us a glimpse of the many fantastic submissions to this year’s competition.
The contest is judged by a panel of industry-recognised professionals, who had to sift through an impressive 42,000 pictures from 96 different countries. Entrants included both amateurs and professional photographers, and images were judged on their creativity, artistry and technical complexity.
The winner was announced on October 13th 2015, three days before the show opened to the public. The exhibition featured the 100 best photographs, and embarked on a world tour once the show in London was complete.
Here are some the incredible ten finalists – one from each category – which revealed the diversity of the natural world.
‘Komodo judo’ by Andrey Gudkov – Amphibians & Reptiles category
Andrey Gudkov had been to Indonesia’s Komodo National Park many times before managing to capture this incredibly rare shot of two male komodo dragons fighting. He had to act quickly as their bite is venomous.
‘To Drink or Not’ by Carlos Perez Naval – 10 Years And Under category
Young photographer Carlos Perez Naval caught this adorable snap while on holiday with his family at Morro Bay in California.
‘The Shark Surfer’ by Thomas Peschak, Photojournalism Award category.
This unique shot by Thomas Peschak is during the test of a prototype surfboard with an electromagnetic shark deterrent in Aliwal Shoal near Durban, South Africa.
‘Jagged peace’ by Floris van Breugal – Land category
A gaucho serrano bird contemplates the enormity of Fitz Roy, in Patagonia, in the early winter snow.
‘Natural frame’ by Morkal Erasmus – Black & White category
Erasmas captured this rare composition while photographing animals from a cramped bunker sunk into the ground beside a waterhole in Namibia’s Etosha National Park.
‘Gorilla care’ by Marcus Westberg – Photojournalism Award: Single Image
Nine-year-old mountain gorilla Ndeze watches with concern as veterinarians check the health of her friend, 12-year-old Maisha, in the Senkwekwe Centre at the Virunga National Park, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
‘Great egret awakening’ by Zsolt Kudich – Birds Category
While working on a project to document the last untouched regions of the Danube River in Eastern Europe, Zsolt Kudich was delighted to find a sixth of Hungary’s great egret population in the one place. When the river flooded into Hungary’s Gemenc Forest, more than a thousand of the birds flocked to the lake to feed on the stranded amphibians, fish and invertebrates.
‘It came from the deep’ by Fabien Michenet – Underwater category
Fabien Michenet spendt many hours diving at night in deep water off the coast of Tahiti, French Polynesia, where he lives to get this image of a juvenile octopus. He found it at 66 feet below the water’s surface, and in reality the tiny creature is only 2cm in size!
‘Snow Hare’ by Rosamund Macfarlane – Mammals category
A snow covered Scottish mountain hare, camoflaged in his winter coat. Capturing one of these on camera was a long time ambition of the photographer Rosamund Macfarlane.
‘Stork art’ by Francisco Mingorance – Urban Wildlife category
In this shot, white storks have created several nests on this sculpture outside the Vostell-Malpartida Museum near Cáceres in Spain.