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Natural History Museum - Wildlife Photographer of the Year images unveiled
Your first look at the new Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition
Romance among the angels
Andrey Narchuk, Russia
Finalist 2017, Behaviour: Invertebrates
Andrey was on an expedition to the Sea of Okhotsk in the Russian Far East, and his intention on this day was to photograph salmon. But as soon as he jumped into the water, he found himself surrounded by thousands of mating sea angels.
To photograph them mating, Andrey had to battle against strong currents and avoid a wall of gill netting, and when he was swept into the net and his equipment became snared, he was forced to make an emergency ascent – but not before he had got his shot. The following day, there wasn’t a single angel to be seen.
Jack Dykinga, USA
Finalist 2017, Plants and Fungi
A band of ancient giants commands the expansive arid landscape of Arizona’s Sonoran Desert National Monument in the USA. These emblematic saguaro cacti – up to 200 years old – may tower at more than 12 metres but are very slow growing.
A lifetime of searching near his desert home led Jack to know several locations that promised interesting compositions. ‘This one allowed me to get right inside its limbs,’ he says. As the gentle dawn light bathed the saguaro’s contorted form, Jack’s wide angle revealed its furrowed arms, perfectly framing its neighbours.
Ashleigh Scully, USA
Finalist 2017, Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year, 11-14 Years
After fishing for clams at low tide, this mother brown bear was leading her young cubs back across the beach to the nearby meadow. But one young cub just wanted to stay and play. It was the moment Ashleigh had been waiting for. She had come to Alaska’s Lake Clark National Park intent on photographing the family life of brown bears.
‘I fell in love with brown bears,’ says Ashleigh, ‘and their personalities… This young cub seemed to think that it was big enough to wrestle mum to the sand. As always, she played along, firm, but patient.’ The result is a cameo of brown bear family life.
Saved but caged
Steve Winter, USA
Finalist 2017, The Wildlife Photojournalist Award: Single Image
A back leg of this six-month-old Sumatran tiger cub was so badly mangled by a snare that it had to be amputated. He was lucky to survive at all, having been trapped for four days before being discovered in a rainforest in Aceh Province on the Indonesian island of Sumatra.
The population of Sumatran tigers is as low as 400–500 (the world population of all wild tigers is no more than 3,200). Anti-poaching forest patrols are helping to stem the killing, partly by locating and removing snares, which is how this cub came to be rescued. The cub, however, will spend the rest of his life in a cage in a Javan zoo. Today, there are probably more Sumatran tigers in zoos than there are left in the wild.
See all 100 award-winning images in the exhibition
Book online to save on tickets for the new Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition, and see the full collection of 100 award-winning images taken by some of the world's best wildlife photographers.
Opens 20 October
Take the exhibition home with you
Be the first to get your hands on this year’s portfolio and highlights books, celebrating the very best in nature photography.
Autumn at the Museum
A season of exhibitions and events for the naturally curious
Encounter some of the world's most venomous creatures, take part in a crime-solving murder-mystery night or sleep over at the Museum. Get closer to the natural world this autumn with our series of exhibitions and events for adults.
See more with Museum membership
Gain free entry to ticketed exhibitions, including Wildlife Photographer of the Year, plus access to exclusive events and discounts in our shops and cafes.