Each year we wait in anticipation for the return of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition. The collection, housed in the London Natural History Museum, always exceeds expectations. Powerful images from each corner of the globe capture the raw beauty of Mother Nature, providing rare insight into life in the wild. As the exhibition for 2017 begins to draw to a close, we’ve collated the photography from the awards that made us tick; our best-of collection as follows…
Memorial to a species, Brent Stirton
As the underground demand for rhino horn endures, so does its devastating effect. Photojournalist Brent Stirton came across one of the industry’s latest victims, a black rhino bull, in South Africa’s Hluhluwe Imfolozi Park, as part of an undercover investigation into the illegal trade. Poignant, emotive and incredibly shocking, Brent’s image, Memorial to a species, saw him take home the grand title of Wildlife Photographer of the Year.
Giant gathering, Tony Wu
Crab surprise, Justin Gilligan
Freelance photographer Justin Gilligan was documenting an artificial reef experiment when a pack of crabs the “size of a football field” swarmed the area, followed soon after by a hungry octopus. Justin’s unexpected encounter made for an award-winning photo.
The good life, Daniël Nelson
Caco, a young, nine-year-old gorilla enjoys a snack of African breadfruit in dense jungle. This is a sight that is increasingly rare, as deforestation continues to encroach on gorillas’ living space, and ultimately, their ability to survive. Young photographer Daniël Nelson from the Netherlands hopes his work will raise awareness for the endangered animals. Earning him the title of the Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year, this photograph certainly is a good start.
Palm-oil survivors, Aaron ‘Bertie’ Gekoski
Eastern Sabah, on the island of Borneo, is a key producer of palm oil – a lucrative global export used in almost half of the products on supermarket shelves. Deforested oil-palm plantations take up the majority of the land in the region, leaving elephants to squeeze into smaller and smaller pockets of rainforest. Photographer Aaron ‘Bertie’ Gekoski captured this telling image of three generations of Bornean elephants edging their way across the platforms of an oil-palm plantation. He won the award for Wildlife Photojournalist: Single Image for his efforts.
Good news! The Wildlife Photographer of The Year exhibition at the Natural History Museum has been extended to July 1st. For more information, head to their website.