Hilarious Animal Photos from 2021 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards are a Welcome Relief

Is that a monkey riding a giraffe’s back? Can snakes laugh? Do kangaroos practice karate? And do puffer fish “pucker up” for the camera? These questions are about to be answered by the finalists in the 2021 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards.

“Whittling down the list of photographs was harder than ever this year,” said competition co-founder Paul Joynson-Hicks. “There were so many funny pictures that had us laughing that we couldn’t settle on a top 40–so we’re releasing the top 42 instead!

“It was great to see a range of animals, from the incredibly rare to the humble pigeon.” Enjoy the photos below – they’re sure to make you smile.

Laughing Snake

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Aditya Kshirsagar

“Vine snakes are very commonly seen snakes in western ghats of India. When approached they show aggression by opening their mouth wide open. Nothing to scare of this beautiful harmless Vine snake. I was happy to find it and smiling and It looks like he was smiling back at me.”

Shhhh! I’m so hungover it hurts.

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Anita Ross

“Burrowing owl youngsters are so amusing to watch. This burrowing owl caught my eye because he looked like he a hangover.”

See who jumps high

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Chu Han Lin

A Mudskipper in Taiwan says, “See who can jump high, you must lose me.”

I guess summer’s over

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/John Speirs

“I was taking pics of pigeons in flight when this leaf landed on birds face.”

Monday Morning Mood

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/>Andrew Mayes

“I took this shot while photographing a group of Pied starlings perched in a tree at the Rietvlei Nature Reserve in South Africa. It perfectly sums up my mood on most Monday mornings.”

Monkey riding a giraffe

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Dirk-Jan Steehouwer

“During a game drive we found a group of monkeys playing around with each other, jumping up and down from a bare branch. It was a joy to watch. After a while I saw a giraffe coming from the right. By the moment the giraffe did pass the branch, one of the monkeys was on his post to ride the giraffe.” Photographed in Murchison Falls NP, Uganda.


The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Jakub Hodan

“This Proboscis monkey could be just scratching its nose on the rough bark, or it could be kissing it. Trees play a big role in the lives of monkeys. Who are we to judge…”

Leaning post

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Andy Parkinson

“A young cub [Kamchatka brown bear] decides to use his patient mother as a leaning post, the birds in the trees requiring closer inspection.”

Let’s dance

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Andy Parkinson

“Two Kamchatka bear cubs square up for a celebratory play fight having successfully navigated a raging torrent (small stream!)”

Ninja Prairie Dog!

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Arthur Trevino

“When this Bald Eagle missed on its attempt to grab this prairie dog, the prairie dog jumped towards the eagle and startled it long enough to escape to a nearby burrow. A real David vs Goliath story!”

Don’t Worry Be Happy

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 202/Axel Bocker

“A Dragonfly early in the morning on a flower looks into my camera and it seems as if it laughing. The year 2020/2021 was very hard for everybody because of Corona. But when you go outside and watch carefully the Beauty of our nature, then problems seems to get less for me. So if I have a bad day this image make me give a smile back.”

Quarantine Life

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Kevin Biskaborn

“Isolated inside with your family eager to get out and explore the world? These eastern raccoon kits are too. Just when you think there’s no more room in the tree hollow, mother raccoon appears and displays just how compact the space is. The babies clambered all over their mom and each another, struggling to take a look at the exact same time. This photo was taken in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. After exploring a particular area with numerous tree hallows, I identified it as a hot spot for raccoon families. Since raccoons will move from den to den, often not spending more than one night at a time in a particular den, locating an area with numerous options is key to locating the animals. I stumbled across this family and immediately worked on leveling the camera with the hole to prevent an upward angle. When the camera and tripod were ready, the baby raccoons were extremely curious (and cooperative), sticking their heads out for a closer look!”

Directing penguin

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Carol Taylor

“Two Gentoo penguins having a discussion after coming out of the surf; Falkland Islands.”


The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Charlie Page

“I was photographing a group of goslings for a while when one broke away from the pack. It hid behind the leg of a bench for a few seconds before poking its little head out to say hello.”

Time for school

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Chee Kee Teo

“A smooth-coated otter ‘bit’ its baby otter to bring it back to and fro for swimming lesson.”

The Photo-Bombing Wave

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Cheryl Strahl

“Polar Bear mom and cubs frolicked in the icy waters of the Arctic. They kept dipping under the water and once came up together with this amusing pose. A tender moment is shared by mom and one cub while the other photo-bombs with a wave to the onlookers. Or, it sure looked like a wave….”

The Baboon who feels like a tenor

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Clemence Guinard

“Resting with its pack, down a road in the Saudi Arabian mountains, this Hamadryas baboon started to yawn. But the graceful position of its paws, its fluffy cape, its eyes looking like it put some makeup. In front of the camera, this Baboon was on stage, ready to please its public and to start its tenor’s solo.”

Majestic and Graceful Bald Eagle

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/David Eppley

“Bald Eagles will use the same nest for years, even decades, adding new material to it at the beginning and throughout the nesting season. Normally, they are highly skilled at snapping branches off of trees while in flight. Possibly tired from working nonstop all morning on a new nest, this particular Bald Eagle wasn’t showing its best form. Yes, sometimes they miss. Although this looks painful, and it might very well be, the eagle recovers with just a few sweeping wing strokes, and choses to rest a bit before making another lumber run.”

Shaking Off 2020

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Dawn Wilson

“I was photographing brown pelicans on a rainy day in southern Louisiana in early 2021, still in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic. As the pelicans woke up, they would shake the water off their bodies before heading out to fish. This particular one almost seemed to be shrugging his shoulders, as if to say, “I have no idea what 2021 will be like.”

Yes, I did it

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021 /Dikky Oesin

A frog climbed a flower from a plant, and when he made it to the end he laughed celebrating his success.


The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Edwin Smits

“While trying to make proper pictures with flash I visited two groups of wild horses for two years. Every now and then they didn’t try to eat my flashes or run over the stands and they posed for me.”

The Green Stylist

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/K Gurumoorthy

“Indian chameleon this image capture in Western Ghats Tamilnadu (Indian) used camera Nikon D5300 70-300mm lens.”

Chinese whispers

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Jan Piecha

“The little raccoon cups are telling secrets to each other.”

“We’re Too Sexy For This Beach”

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Joshua Galicki

“I was lying on the beach during a stretch of fair weather at Volunteer Point in East Falkland, just waiting to capture a Gentoo Penguin jumping out of the surf to land on the beach. To my delight, a trio emerged from the water and walked straight in my direction. I really enjoyed photographing this moment as it seems to capture some sassy personality displayed by these individuals.”


The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Ken Jensen

“A golden silk monkey in Yunnan China – this is actually a show of aggression however in the position that the monkey is in it looks quite painful!”

Foot Jam

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Brook Burling

“There is a great big pine tree with a small to medium sized hole in it near my house where a young racoon has called this home for the past year. Well this year it appears that the little racoon has outgrown it’s tiny home as it barely fits!”

Dancing Away to Glory

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Sarosh Lodhi

“A young langur sways its body to give an impression that its dancing. Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve, India”

Smoked Deer for Dinner

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Siddhant Agrawal

“I have been following the family of a tigress called Paaro in India’s Jim Corbett National Park for many years. This is her daughter who has stood on her hind limbs to be able to scratch her face with a log. But, it appears as if she is carrying the log on her shoulders.”

Draw me like one of your French Bears

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Wenona Suydam

“This young Kodiak Brown Bear sauntered down the riverbed and stopped across from me. She proceeded to start making herself a bear bed pulling back the sand with her gigantic claws. Once she had her bed just how she wanted it she laid down, rolled over on her back and started smiling and me! And she didn’t stop smiling! I would have to say she was the most provocative bear I had ever seen!”

Just Checking

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Larry Petterborg

“A male Vervet Monkey was hanging around a bridge over the Luangwa River in South Luangwa National Park [Zambia, Africa] looking for some action (handouts from passersby).”


The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Lea Scaddan

“Two Western Grey Kangaroos were fighting and one missed kicking him in the stomach.”

Opera warm-ups

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Lea Scaddan

“The kangaroo looked like he was singing ‘the hills are alive, with the sound of music’ in the field.”

Mr. Giggles

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Martina Novotna

“Grey seal pup appears to be giggling. I loved the expression captured. It looks so human-like. I was lying on a rocky beach for hours, as motionlessly as possible, patiently waiting for seal life to unfold around me. This seal pup came onto the shore for a bit of rest and ended up sleeping on its chosen rock for hours before the incoming tide forced it to move more inland. Occasionally, it would stretch and yawn and it was one of the yawns that led to this expression, looking as if the seal was giggling.”

Welcome to Nature!

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Mattias Hammar

“A red damselfly welcomes us into the world of macro nature. It was so amazing to see it climb up the straw, and pause at the intersection to say hi!”

How do you get that damn window open?

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Nicolas de Vaulx

This raccoon spends his time trying to get into houses out of curiosity and perhaps also to steal food.


The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Pal Marchhart

A young bear descending from a tree looks like he/she is playing hide and seek. Hargita Mountains, Romania

Did I say you could take my picture?

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Patrick Dirlam

“I followed this Ruby-Crowned Kinglet for about 15 minutes as it hopped from one branch to another in fast succession. I think it knew I was following it because, all of a sudden, it just stopped and stared at me for all of about 3 seconds!”

Sweet lips are for kissing!

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Philipp Stahr

“This picture was taken at Curacao, Dutch Caribbean. Usually Box fishes are difficult to take pictures of, since they do not have a problem of a diver coming close, but if you show interest, they always turn the back and not the face to you. That’s why I tried to swim 0.5m above the fish and showing no interest at all to him. The same time I had my camera not in front of me, but below at my chest pointing to the bottom. When the right moment had come, I turned the camera 90 degrees to the front and just point and shoot, hoping to have the fish in focus. Never expected to have its beautiful lips that close!

Cotton-Eyed Joe

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Rick Elieson

Ever seen a grizzly bear square dance? Just need a jug, some spoons and a banjo. Gets ‘em every time.


The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Aditya Kshirsagar

“Males of these species of lizard [Fan Throated lizard] chooses higher elevations to monitor their territory and display. Caught this particular male roosting on the twig of bush during high heat summer.”

I got you!

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Kranitz Roland

I spent my days in my usual “gopher place” and yet again, these funny little animals haven’t belied their true nature.

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2021/Kranitz Roland

The annual competition, founded by Paul Joynson-Hicks and Tom Sullam, both professional photographers and passionate conservationists, is a global, online and free-to-enter photography competition, that takes a light-hearted approach to encouraging wildlife conservation.

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to keep many of us at home, the organizers want to encourage people to be conservationists at home. Tips include:

  • Shop locally and responsibly. Support local farmers and businesses to shrink your carbon footprint. Try to avoid non-recyclable products and one-use plastics and packaging.
  • Plant boxes in your windowsills. Grow some flowers for bees. We suggest researching which ones bees like best.
  • Become a wildlife influencer. This can be done in many ways. Supporting your local environmental initiatives and conservation efforts, and encouraging others to do so, is a great place to start.

There are more helpful tips on conservation on the Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards website here.

This year the competition is donating 10 per cent of its revenue to Save Wild Orangutans. The charity helps to safeguard this critically endangered Great Ape in Gunung Palung National Park, Borneo.

Winners for this year’s competition will be announced October 22, 2021. Keep your eyes out for the winning photographs here on Reshareworthy.com and visit the Comedy Wildlife Photography website for details about the annual competition.

You can take a look at some of the entries from 2020’s competition here and here.

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards also publishes a book series, which is available on Amazon with partial proceeds going to wildlife conservation.

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