Voting is now open for people to choose their favorite image from among 25 stunning wildlife photos up for the Wildlife Photographer of the Year People’s Choice Award. And from the looks of it, it’s going to be tough to pick a winner!
Among the shortlisted photos for the 2023 competition are amazing images of a sleeping polar bear, a starling murmuration that looks like a giant bird and a turtle saying “hello” to a dragonfly. There are thought-provoking images too – a bull elephant foraging in a dump and a rare crested black macaque drinking from plastic water bottles, among others.
One thing all the photographs have in common is how simply wonderful they are. We know we are having a hard time picking our favorite (voting information is included after the photos).
A polar bear carves out a bed from a small iceberg before drifting off to sleep in the far north, off Norway’s Svalbard archipelago.
A gelada suckles its baby alongside a companion at the edge of a plateau in the Simien Mountains of Ethiopia.
Two courting mountain hares come together to touch noses in the Monadhliath Mountains in Scotland, UK.
Moon jellyfish swarm in the cool autumnal waters of a fjord outside Tromsø in northern Norway illuminated by the aurora borealis.
Near Montpellier, France, a cuckoo wasp is captured mid-air trying to enter a mason bee’s clay burrow as a smaller cuckoo wasp cleans its wings below.
A pygmy round-eared bat returns to its termite-nest home as two well-camouflaged family members look out from the entrance in the lowland forests of Costa Rica.
A mesmerising mass of starlings swirl into the shape of a giant bird on their way to communal roosts above the city of Rome, Italy.
A Celebes crested macaque investigates the contents of a plastic bottle from a pile ready for recycling on a beach at the edge of Tangkoko Batuangus Nature Reserve, Indonesia.
A wood duck and its brood are caught in a late spring snowstorm in Smiggin Holes, New South Wales, Australia.
Standing on a rock in the Judean Foothills of Israel, a red fox cub locks eyes with the shrew it had thrown up in the air moments earlier.
A snowshoe hare pulls its feet to its head to make the next big hop across the soft, deep snow in the forests of the Rocky Mountain National Park, USA.
The rarest species of wild dog in the world, the Ethiopian wolf, takes a rest among the highland vegetation of Ethiopia’s Bale Mountains National Park.
These coats, made from the skins of some of the most endangered big cats, were confiscated by European customs officers and held for forensic tests before being used for educational events.
A bull elephant kicks over garbage as it scavenges for rotten vegetables and fruit at a dump in Tissamaharama, Sri Lanka.
Under the watchful eye of its mother in South Africa’s Greater Kruger National Park, a curious lion cub walks towards the photographer, who was watching from a vehicle.
A barn swallow flies over a meadow of cornflowers, catching insects during springtime in eastern Germany.
A grizzly bear rises up on its hind legs and glances towards the photographer before returning to fish for salmon in the Chilko River in British Columbia, Canada.
A humpback whale calf misses some of its mother’s milk, which drifts and swirls in the currents off the coast of Rurutu, French Polynesia.
A painting-like composition of bulrushes and quaking aspens is framed in a small corner of the Cabriel River in the Sierra de Albarracín Mountains, Spain.
A Balkan pond turtle shares a moment of peaceful coexistence with a northern banded groundling dragonfly in Israel’s Jezreel Valley.
An Adélie penguin approaches an emperor penguin and its chick during feeding time in Antarctica’s Atka Bay.
A rescued chimpanzee looks on from its enclosure at the Chimpanzee Conservation Center in the Republic of Guinea.
A mudskipper fiercely defends its territory from a trespassing crab in Roebuck Bay, Australia.
A young red fox takes advantage of a bin stacked high with rubbish before collection day on a street in London, UK.
A pair of lionesses devotedly groom one of the pride’s five cubs in Kenya’s Maasai Mara.
The People’s Choice Award is a separate award which is in addition to the competition’s juried winners that were announced last month. The Wildlife Photographer of the Year also releases highly-commended photos each year.
The Wildlife Photographer of the Year is developed and produced by the Natural History Museum, London and sees more than 50,000 entries competing for the top prize. The People’s Choice Award gives the public a chance to participate.
“Wildlife Photographer of the Year’s People’s Choice Award always offers an astounding selection of images, and this year is no different,” says Dr. Douglas Gurr, Director of the Natural History Museum. “We invite the public to join the jury and vote for their favorite; whether breathtaking beauty or a powerful story, it’s sure to be a difficult decision!”
Voting for the People’s Choice Award is now open, and people can make their picks until January 31, 2024. The winner will be announced on February 7.
Vote at www.nhm.ac.uk/wpy/peoples-choice
All 25 shortlisted photos along with other finalists from this year’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year are exhibited at the Natural History Museum in London, England.
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Portfolio 33 is a hardcover book featuring all 100 pictures awarded in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition, which is available via Amazon.