Wildlife Photographer of the Year People’s Choice Award winners

Late conservation activist Steve Irwin would be proud of this particular accomplishment. His son, Robert, won Wildlife Photographer of the Year’s People’s Choice Award for his top-down drone image. A wildfire ripped through a forest near the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve in Queensland, Australia, and Irwin captured it at the right moment. The perfect 50/50 split displays the damage inflicted on one side while the other remained preserved.

‘I am incredibly excited to win the Wildlife Photographer of The Year People’s Choice Award. For me, nature photography is about telling a story to make a difference for the environment and our planet. I feel it is particularly special for this image to be awarded, not only as a profound personal honor but also as a reminder of our effect on the natural world and our responsibility to care for it,’ says Robert Irwin of his victory.

Natural History Museum selected a shortlist of 25 images from over 49,000 images that were submitted to the annual Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. From that pool, four others were shortlisted and Irwin’s was declared the favorite. All five images will be on display until August 1st when the Natural History Museum, in London, reopens.

Winner 2020, Wildlife Photographer of the Year People’s Choice Award: ‘Bushfire’ by Robert Irwin (Australia)

Image Description: A fire line leaves a trail of destruction through woodland near the border of the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve in Cape York, Queensland, Australia. The area is of high conservation significance, with over 30 different ecosystems found there, and is home to many endangered species.

The fires are one of the biggest threats to this precious habitat. Although natural fires or managed burns can be quite important in an ecosystem, when they are lit deliberately and without consideration, often to flush out feral pigs to hunt, they can rage out of control and have the potential to devastate huge areas.

Highly Commended 2020, Wildlife Photographer of the Year People’s Choice Award: ‘The last Goodbye’ Ami Vitale (United States)

Image Description: Joseph Wachira comforts Sudan, the last male northern white rhino left on the planet, moments before he passed away at Ol Pejeta Wildlife Conservancy in northern Kenya. Suffering from age-related complications, he died surrounded by the people who had cared for him.

With every extinction we suffer more than loss of ecosystem health. When we see ourselves as part of nature, we understand that saving nature is really about saving ourselves. Ami’s hope is that Sudan’s legacy will serve as a catalyst to awaken humanity to this reality.

Highly commended 2020, Wildlife Photographer of the Year People’s Choice Award: ‘Hare Ball’ by Andy Parkinson (United Kingdom)

Image Description: Andy spent five weeks watching the mountain hares near Tomatin in the Scottish Highlands, waiting patiently for any movement – a stretch, a yawn or a shake – which typically came every 30 to 45 minutes. As he watched, frozen and prostrate, with 50 to 60 mph winds surging relentlessly around him, the cold started to distract and his fingers clasping the icy metal camera body and lens began to burn.

Then relief came as this little female moved her body into a perfect spherical shape. A movement of sheer joy. Andy craves such moments: the isolation, the physical challenge and, most importantly, time with nature.

Highly commended 2020, Wildlife Photographer of the Year People’s Choice Award: ‘Close Encounter’ by Guillermo Esteves (United States)

Image Description: The worried looking expression on this dog’s face speaks volumes and is a reminder that moose are large, unpredictable, wild animals. Guillermo was photographing moose on the side of the road at Antelope Flats in Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming, USA, when this large bull took an interest in the furry visitor – the driver of the car unable to move it before the moose made its approach. Luckily, the moose lost interest and went on its way after a few moments.

Highly commended 2020, Wildlife Photographer of the Year People’s Choice Award: ‘Drey Dreaming’ by Neil Anderson (United Kingdom)

Image Description: As the weather grew colder, two Eurasian red squirrels (only one is clearly visible) found comfort and warmth in a box Neil had put up in one of the pine trees near his home in the Scottish Highlands. In the colder months, it’s common for the squirrels, even when unrelated, to share dreys.

After discovering the box full of nesting material and in frequent use, Neil installed a camera and LED light with a diffuser on a dimmer. The box had a lot of natural light so he slowly increased the light to highlight his subjects – and using the WiFi app on his phone he was able take stills from the ground.

Author: Go to Source