Guardian’s “wildlife photographer of the year” contest

Some day one of my readers is going to win one of these contests. In this case the Guardian has posted 11 pictures taken by the finalists of the 2015 “Wildlife Photographer of the Year” contest. The winner will be announced on October 18. Go look at the 11 photos and pick the winner. Below I’ve chosen my five favorites, which include an Honorary Cat™. (There’s also a real felid among the other 6).  The notes and credits are taken from the Guardian. 

Nosy Neighbor by Sam Hobson (UK)

Sam knew exactly who to expect when he set his camera on the wall one summer’s evening in a suburban street in Bristol, the UK’s famous fox city. He wanted to capture the inquisitive nature of the urban red fox in a way that would pique the curiosity of its human neighbours about the wildlife around them.

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Photograph: Sam Hobson/2016 Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Termite Tossing by Willem Kruger (South Africa)

Termite after termite after termite – using the tip of its massive beak-like forceps to pick them up, the hornbill would flick them in the air and then swallow them. Foraging beside a track in South Africa’s semi-arid Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, the southern yellow-billed hornbill was so deeply absorbed in termite snacking that it gradually worked its way to within 6 metres (19ft) of where Willem sat watching from his vehicle.

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Photograph: Willem Kruger/2016 Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Swarming under the Stars by Imre Potyo (Hungary)

Imre was captivated by the chaotic swarming of mayflies on Hungary’s River Rába and dreamt of photographing the spectacle beneath a starlit sky. For a few days each year (at the end of July or beginning of August), vast numbers of the adult insects emerge from the Danube tributary, where they developed as larvae. On this occasion, the insects emerged just after sunset. At first, they stayed close to the water, but once they had mated, the females gained altitude.

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Photograph: Imre Potyó/2016 Wildlife Photographer of the Year

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Photograph: Scott Portelli/2016 Wildlife Photographer of the Year

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Photograph: Dhyey Shah/2016 Wildlife Photographer of the Year

h/t: Gregory


  1. Stephen Barnard
    Posted September 1, 2016 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

    I’m going with “Splitting the catch by Audun”.

    The photo tells three intertwined stories in one image.

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted September 1, 2016 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

      There’s also a pun, intentional or not, about “splitting” The image is split between below and above water. I’m a sucker for these kind of images.

  2. Nwalsh
    Posted September 1, 2016 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    Da fox!

    • Merilee
      Posted September 1, 2016 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

      Love da fox, too:-)

  3. Merilee
    Posted September 1, 2016 at 3:27 pm | Permalink


  4. GBJames
    Posted September 1, 2016 at 3:50 pm | Permalink


  5. keith cook + / -
    Posted September 1, 2016 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    Yep those are a nice batch of photographs and stories. The disappearing fish is intriguing, is that photo manipulated to demonstrate the natural effect, if not, good job.

    “Rivalry among the world’s largest cuttlefish – up to a metre (3.3ft) long – is fierce, as males outnumber females by up to 11 to one.”
    I have just watched a series called ‘natures greatest hustlers’. I was pleasantly surprised I thought it would be… well, crap.
    The male cuttlefish featured. The smaller males will take on the behaviour and appearance of a female, sidle up to the larger male and mate with a female right under the nose of the wary larger male.
    Suckered well and truly.
    A small bright coloured bird used light, or should i say lack of… shadows to enhance it’s colour display, effectively using an illusion to impress a potential mate. One species of mollusc used a lure to disperse it’s offspring! the lure happened to have all the markings and relative shape of a small fish that was eaten by a a local predator. When the lure was attacked the mollusc would spray all it’s clam like spawn into it’s face where they promptly attached themselves inside the gills. What’s amazing about that is, the mollusc has no eyes to fashion a lure that looked like the predators favourite dish. The predator looked a little stunned by this action.
    If a nervous system is all you need i find this a neat example of early pre brain life where brain stuff, let alone eyes were not essential to survive. It outwitted a brain comprehensively.
    Sorry i do not have names for the above. I could find out but i’m lazy.

    • Mark Sturtevant
      Posted September 1, 2016 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

      It is an interesting theme in animals that where there is competition among males for access to females, then natural selection comes up with different forms of males. A common form that turns up in many species is just as you describe in cuttlefish — sneaky males that look like females. They sneak in and mate, while not triggering the big males’ attack.

  6. rickflick
    Posted September 1, 2016 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    Great, evocative images. I think a closeup of a monkey’s expression is almost cheating in photo competition.

  7. Mark Joseph
    Posted September 1, 2016 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

    The two photos of birds (one is in the OP) are my favorites.

  8. Posted September 2, 2016 at 11:40 am | Permalink

    “as males outnumber females by up to 11 to one.” – yowza! How does that happen?

    • rickflick
      Posted September 2, 2016 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

      Men use longer lenses.

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