15 of the Wildest Photos from the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Awards

Photo of toucan eating a bat

The Natural History Museum revealed the winners of the Wildlife Photographer of Year 2021 competition this week and, as usual, there were some amazing photos in this international contest. Spanning a variety of categories including Wildlife Photographer of the Year for both Adult and Young classifications, Animal Portraits, Animals in their Environment, Animal Behavior and many more, winners were chosen from over 50,000 entries from 95 countries.

On the below pages, we are showcasing 15 of our favorite winning and highly commended photos from this 57th annual competition. Read the captions (supplied by the contest’s website) to learn the stories behind these incredible photos of animals. Visit the Wildlife Photographer of the Year contest website to see all the winners. The images will be on display at the Natural History Museum in London starting today before going on a gallery tour in Europe and North America.

Animals in Their Environment – Winner: Zach Clothier decided these bull elk remains were an ideal spot to set a camera trap. Returning to the scene was challenging. Zack bridged gushing meltwater with fallen trees, only to find his setup trashed. This was the last frame captured on the camera.
Photo of a giant spider
Urban Wildlife – Winner: After noticing tiny spiders all over his bedroom, Gil Wizen looked under his bed. There, guarding its brood, was one of the world’s most venomous spiders. Before safely relocating it outdoors, he photographed the human-hand-sized Brazilian wandering spider using forced perspective to make it appear even larger.
Photo of a bird eating a bat
Behavior: Birds – Highly Commended: Attracted by a commotion nearby, Sebastián Di Doménico discovered a white-throated toucan whacking a struggling bat against a tree. Sebastián adjusted his camera for the low light and captured the toucan’s vibrant profile as it overcame the helpless bat.

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