2022 Wildlife Photographer of the Year Awards

The Natural History Museum in London is holding an annual Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. This year, the competition had 38,575 entries from all over the world. Here are some of this year’s best photos and the stories behind them.

The images in this year’s competition are amazing in many different ways. Some show animals that are rarely seen. Others present animals that behave in surprising ways. Some capture a wonderful moment.

This year’s grand prize was won by USA Karen Aigner for a stunning shot of a bumblebee cactus ball.

A bumblebee of cactus bees compete to mate.
This year’s grand prize was won by USA Karen Aigner for a stunning cactus bee bumblebee shot (above). The “ball” was a lot of male bees fighting to win a single female bee.
(Source: Karen Aigner / Wildlife Photographer of the Year .)

Cactus bees live underground. As their name suggests, they mainly live on cactus plants. The photo was taken in southern Texas in May, when the bees had just come out of their tunnels and were ready to mate.

The “ball” was a lot of male bees fighting to win a single female bee. Ms. Aigner says that shortly after the photo was taken, the female flew with one of the males.

A harrowing sight of polar bears peering out of the windows of an abandoned house in the mist of a long-abandoned settlement on Kolyuchin Island.
Dmitry Koch from Russia won the award for “Urban Wildlife”. His picture of polar bears was taken in an old house on an island in the Chukchi Sea. Use a drone to take the photo.
(Source: Dmitriy Koch / Wildlife Photographer of the Year .)

Dmitry Koch from Russia won the award for “Urban Wildlife”. His picture of polar bears was taken in an old house on an island in the Chukchi Sea, between Russia and Alaska.

Mr. Koch was on a boat when he noticed polar bears walking in an area where no one had lived in years. To get the picture without disturbing the bears, use calm Drone.

Fernando Constantino Martinez Belmar waited in the dark to take this photo of a Yucatan rat snake holding a bat in mid-air.
Fernando Constantino Martinez Belmar of Mexico had to wait in the dark in a cave full of bats and snakes to get this photo. Yucatan rat snakes hang from cracks in the ceiling of a cave, hoping to catch one of the many bats that fly out of the cave at night.
(Source: Fernando Constantino Martinez-Belmar / Wildlife Photographer of the Year .)

Fernando Constantino Martinez Belmar of Mexico had to wait in the dark in a cave full of bats and snakes to get his picture. Yucatan rat snakes hang from cracks in the ceiling of a cave, hoping to catch one of the many bats that fly out of the cave at night.

Using a red light that did not bother the animals, Mr. Martinez Belmar waited until the right moment to take the photo. Received the Amphibian and Reptile Behavior Award.

A young gray-breasted wrench presses its ear to the ground to hear small insects.
Nick Kanakis from the United States captured this image of a gray-breasted woody wrens – a bird that spends most of its time on the ground. The bird throws its ear to the ground, and listens for insects to pick them up and eat them.
(Source: Nick Kanakis / Wildlife Photographer of the Year .)

Nick Kanakis from the United States captured this image of a gray-breasted woody wrens – a bird that spends most of its time on the ground. The bird throws its ear to the ground, and listens for insects to pick them up and eat them.

Having spotted the bird looking for food in the distance, it remained very still, hoping to get close. When that happened, he was able to get the shot that won the Bird Behavior Award.

Youth competition

The Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition is a separate competition for people under the age of 18.

Ekaterina B poses as a two-masted alpine ibex in order to excel in the snow-capped Italian mountains.
Italy’s Ekaterina B won the 10 and under award for Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year. This photo was taken of two men of Alpine ibex standing on their hind legs, fighting in the mountains near the Italian border with France.
(Source: Ekaterina B. / Wildlife Photographer of the Year .)

Italy’s Ekaterina B won the 10 and under award for Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year. This photo of an alpine caribou was taken in the mountains near the Italian border with France. She was out on a trip with her family in the spring, when she noticed two caribou standing on their hind legs, quarreling.

Alpine Ibex has recovered well after almost disappearing from the area in the early 19th century. Now, after decades of protection, there are more than 50,000 animals.


Did you know…?
This year’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year has been developed and produced by the Natural History Museum in London. The Museum will accept images for next year’s competition through December 8. If you like to take pictures of nature, it is It’s time to get busy! Even if you don’t take pictures, you may want to look at more files amazing pictures.

Leave a Comment