Wow - just wow.
The Wildlife Photographer Of The Year competition always grabs our attention. There’s just something about seeing the most striking and glorious animals in their natural habitat that makes us want to stop everything we’re doing and stare for hours at the baby polar bears or warring lionesses or angry tigers.
Now in its 51st year, the competition has spawned a book – Portfolio 25 – which features its winning 100 images, and they’re certainly jaw-dropping, to say the least.
We can imagine this sitting quite perfectly on our coffee table at home…
Here are some of our favourite images from the book.
A whale of a mouthful, by Michael AW, Australia
Photographically, AW’s greatest chalenge was coping with the huge changes in light underwater due to the movements of the fish and the predators – while also staying out of the way of the sharks and whales. He definitely managed to get a striking winning shot, though.
Reflection in black, by Petr Bambousek, Czech Republic
This intimate photograph of a Celebes crested macaque was no easy feat to capture – Bambousek walked up to 3 miles a day with a troop of macaques as they searched for food, finally getting the chance to capture the striking shot when one macaque sat in the shade of the tree and stared intensely, providing the perfect light and expression to take his winning picture.
Heaven on Earth, by Marina Cano, Spain
In Namibia’s Etosha National Park, Cano took this striking photograph of giraffes drinking at the waterhole. To avoid creating ‘just another sunset shot’, she flipped the image so the animals are the right way up. Genius.
A tale of two foxes, by Don Gutoski, Canada
It took Gutoski three hours in minus 30 degree cold to get his winning shot, watching patiently while one fox feasted on another. This is a gory image – but unfortunately, nature can’t just be all about lion cubs, baby seals and tiny giraffes.
Raven strut, by Connor Stefanison, Canada
Stefanison took his winning shot while still at university studying ecology and conversation. He waited on the summit of Mount Hollyburn until one raven finally strutted its stuff across the pristine snow.