Every year, we eagerly wait to see the fantastic photos that battle it out for fame, glory, and the chance to win their artists the honor of being called the Wildlife Photographer of the Year. This year’s winner is none other than Yongqing Bao, who won the award with his stunning photo called ‘The Moment,’ featuring a young fox and a marmot.
Scroll down, upvote your favorite photos, and share them with your friends. Let us know in the comments which pictures you like the best and why, as well as what you think of Bao’s winning entry.
#1. »The Moment » By Yongqing Bao, China, Behaviour: Mammals, Grand Title Winner
This Himalayan marmot was not long out of hibernation when it was surprised by a mother Tibetan fox with three hungry cubs to feed. With lightning-fast reactions, Yongqing captured the attack – the power of the predator baring her teeth, the terror of her prey, the intensity of life and death written on their faces.
As one of the highest-altitude-dwelling mammals, the Himalayan marmot relies on its thick fur for survival through the extreme cold. In the heart of winter it spends more than six months in an exceptionally deep burrow with the rest of its colony. Marmots usually do not resurface until spring, an opportunity not to be missed by hungry predators.
#2. »Bee Line » By Frank Deschandol, France, Behaviour: Invertebrates, Highly Commended 2019
Bees buzzed in the long grass around the lake as evening fell. To Frank’s delight, they were settling down in little rows along the stems. These were solitary bees, probably males, gathering for the night in suitable resting places, while the females occupied nests they had built nearby.
Being cold-blooded, bees gain energy from the sun’s heat and rest at night and during cool weather. Holding tight to the stems with their strong, jaw-like mandibles, they gradually relax – their bodies lower, their wings rest and their antennae droop – until they fall asleep, waiting for the morning to come.
#3. »Land Of The Eagle » By Audun Rikardsen, Norway, Behaviour: Birds, Winner 2019
Audun carefully positioned this tree branch, hoping it would make a perfect lookout for a golden eagle. He set up a camera trap and occasionally left road-kill carrion nearby. Very gradually, over the next three years, this eagle started to use the branch to survey its coastal realm. Audun captured its power as it came in to land, talons outstretched.
Golden eagles typically fly at around 50 kilometres per hour but can reach speeds of up to 320 kilometres per hour when diving for prey. This, along with their sharp talons, makes them formidable hunters. Normally they kill small mammals, birds, reptiles or fish, but they also eat carrion and have been known to target larger animals too.
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