Bird Photo Competition 4 2018 : Results

  • Competition Winner : First Prize
  • $653.60
  • Judges Comment
  • Most bird photographers concentrate on aesthetics or action, but there is a small photojournalism niche that's getting increasing attention as more people seek photography that tells stories. Here, the story is one that would be unfamiliar to many viewers, namely that huge numbers of birds are deliberately trapped using nets for research purposes. Proponents say this research is essential to build knowledge about birds and to target conservation activities. Opponents say the activity is performed mainly for curiosity or even sport and any benefits don't justify the tens of thousands of birds killed or injured in the process. In any case, this image nicely depicts the grittiness of the activity, emphasised by placing an immaculate, elegantly posed 'free' Kingfisher next to a dishevelled netted individual. Imagery of this type can influence public opinion more than words and can result in significant impact on previously unchallenged human activities. [Post-Results Edit: The photographer's comment states that the actual story here is the deliberate trapping of birds to protect crops, rather than the deliberate trapping of birds in the name of research. I've left my judge's comment as it was to provide food for thought on both stories and to further illustrate the topics that can be impacted by bird/wildlife photography.]
  • Photographers Comment
  • Farmers of many south Asian countries started using fishing nets in the field to protect their crop from small birds specially when the seeds of paddy started to grow. But it became a death trap for many species who have no connection with the destruction of the paddy seed. Like this common kingfisher who might aiming for the shallow water bodies besides the paddy fields for the small fish but ending trapped into the net. Every year thousands of bird died like this. Location :- West-Bengal, India. Taken with Nikon D810, Nikon 300 f4 + 1.4 TC
  • Mark Of Excellence
  • Judges Comment
  • The two perched owls would have made a worthy shot in their own right, but the radically-posed flying bird between them makes this an arresting image. Triangular compositions are dynamic, but rare in bird photography.
  • Mark Of Excellence
  • Judges Comment
  • Great flight shot of a well-lit Kestrel with (partial) prey. Placement of the eye in the centre of the frame adds impact, but it's the head-turn towards the camera/viewer that makes the shot.
  • Mark Of Excellence
  • Judges Comment
  • Backlit droplet trails, presumably from a flapping fish, elevate this shot of a hunting Heron.
  • Mark Of Excellence
  • Judges Comment
  • Nicely timed and composed capture of a Skimmer doing what it does best.
  • Photographers Comment
  • The Black Skimmer photo was taken at St. Marks NWR on a heavy overcast day in the morning. The wind was very calm making the pond smooth like glass. I used a Nikon D810 DSLR with a Nikon 500mm f/4 lens and a 1.7x Teleconverter mounted on a tripod. Basic post processing using Bridge and Photoshop.
  • www.naturesvisionphotography.com/
  • Mark Of Excellence
  • Judges Comment
  • Pleasing Rule-of-Thirds composition showing a Dipper in its natural habitat.
  • Mark Of Excellence
  • Judges Comment
  • Cute, humorous shot of this American Goldfinch apparently sheltering from the rain.