We’ve all watched with either fascination or horror as mice scurry across the platform while waiting for the tube. But for one man it was the start of a five night marathon that ended in being named winner of the Natural History Museum’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year Lumix People’s Choice Award.
Photographer Sam Rowley beat off competition from over 48,000 entries to win the prestigious award. According to the panel of judges ‘Sam discovered the best way to photograph the mice inhabiting London’s Underground was to lie on the platform and wait’. What they didn’t add was that the wait would be five nights as Rowley lay poised for the perfect shot. According to the panel ‘He only saw them fight over scraps of food dropped by passengers a few times, possibly because it is so abundant. This fight lasted a split second, before one grabbed a crumb and they went their separate ways’.
The wait would be five nights as Rowley lay poised for the perfect shot
The Bristol based BBC researcher wasn’t the only winner at the awards. Also recognised were ‘Losing the Fight’ by Aaron Gekoski, which depicts an orangutan at Bangkok’s Safari World dressed in boxing attire. The practice of making the orangutans box, dance and play drums is commonplace in the country (the shows stopped briefly in 2004 after international outcry, but now continue to run daily). Perfectly capturing the animal’s air of resignation, Gekoski’s picture was Highly Commended by the judges.
Another Highly Commended piece was Matching Outfits by Lebanese photographer Michel Zoghzoghi. He caught the two jaguars, a mother and her cub, in front of his boat on the on the Três Irmãos River with the anaconda in tow, and a lucky snap propelled him to the awards.
Photographer Francis De Andres’s Spot the Reindeer takes the challenging extremes of Norwegian archipelago Svalbard and turns them to the Spaniard’s advantage as he was able to take his perfect photo of white arctic reindeer.
He caught the two jaguars, a mother and her cub, in front of his boat on the on the Três Irmãos River with the anaconda in tow
The final entrant to be honoured by the judging panel was Martin Buzora’s The surrogate mother. The touching photo of orphaned baby black rhino Kitui with ranger Elias Mugambi was taken at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy park in northern Kenya. The ranger spends weeks at a time away from his family caring for the animals, who have landed at the sanctuary as a result of poaching or because their mothers are blind and can’t care for them.
The photos were all part of the publicly voted category from October’s main competition. The competition saw a photo of a marmot startled by a Tibetan fox win first prize, shot by photographer Yongqing Bao in China’s Qilian Mountains.
The Lumix People’s Choice Award were drawn at this week’s awards from a shortlist of 25. After 28,000 people voted, these five were the the most popular, but all the pictures will be on show at the Natural History Museum until May, so you can go and discover your own favourite.