Every year, London’s Natural History Museum and BBC Worldwide hold a global competition for nature photographers. This year marked the 50th anniversary of the competition for the Wildlife Photographer of the Year, and the competition was fierce (really, some entries had fangs! err, featured fangs…). This year’s competition received over 42,000 entries from 96 different countries. How the judges were able to pick just one winner is mind-boggling to say the least! But we wouldn’t exactly complain about having to look at awesome nature photography all day.

Out of the 42,000 entries, the winner the panel selected is American Michael “Nick” Nichols. The winning photo he submitted features lions in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park. Nichols followed this pride of lions for six months in order to capture the winning photo. After spending so much time around Nichols, the lion cubs eventually became used to his presence. As this photo reflects, the lions seem to be completely at ease.

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Nichols took the photograph in infa-red to capture the heat levels and then was able to transpose the image into black and white. Nichols explains that using this technique “transforms the light and turns the moment into something primal, biblical almost.”

Nichols was the only contestant who walked away with a prize. The competition also named winners in the categories of “Earth’s Environments” and “The World in Our Hands” as well as youth categories.

Winner of the “Earth Environment” category comes from Francisco Negroni, entitled “Apocalypse”

Bruno D’Amicis captured this photograph, entitled “The price they pay,” of a teenager trying to illegally sell a Fennec fox in Tunisia. The photo won the “World in Our Hand” category.

This haunting photo comes from a finalist in the “World in Our Hands” category. It features a young great white shark who died after being caught on a fisherman’s hook. “The longtime lottery” by Rodrigo Friscione Wyssmann.

Eight-year-old Carlos Perez Naval was named the Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year and the winner of the Under 10 age group, for this stunning photo, “Sunbathing at Dusk.”

Will Jenkins was named the winner of the 11-14 age group. His photo “Green dragon” was captured while he was on vacation with his family in Costa Rica and came across a sunbathing iguana.

The winner of the 15-17 year old age category, Anton Lilja, hails from Sweden. “The long embrace” was photographed nearby Lilja’s home.

“Snowbird” by Edwin Sahlin was a finalist in the 15-17 category.

All image source: telegraph.co.uk

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