The results of the annual Comedy Wildlife Photo contest are in – and certain to make you laugh in the face of nature’s beautiful creatures.
Last month, an esteemed panel of judges led by wildlife photographer Paul Joynson-Hicks had to pore over fantastically funny animal photos, selecting the 13 greatest from entries to the first-ever Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards. Tough job.
Judges included some familiar faces from the telly, with wildlife TV presenter Kate Humble and comedian Hugh Dennis representing two key elements of this contest.
That said, photography is also critical to success, and the skill of this shot from 2015 winner Julian Rad is matched by its comic relief, encapsulated with the title ‘Rush Hour’.
The Austrian photographer’s wild European hamster was celebrated for being “technically incredible and hilariously funny” and with those puffed cheeks and look of solid determination, it’s hard not to see our own selves trying to catch the fitness bug in this little fellah.
Stags are also photo favourites. So iconic. So majestic. Like this silver runner-up captured in Richmond Park, London.
2015 is the year we all fell in love with the handsome gorilla at Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens, but check out this absolute stunner (and bronze runner-up).
But with so many comic animal poses to capture in the wild, the judges couldn’t just pick a mere three for recognition – and here are some more of the highly commended entrants. (The hippo is an absolute belter. Ready your funny bone.)
First up, a Madagascan sifaki in Fort Dauphin, Toliara, practises tai chi.
At this point, you likely resemble Julie Hunt’s seal.
Taken in Tanzania, Marc Mol’s photo dispels the myth of hippos’ symbiotic relationship with the oxpecker.
These baby baboons in Kenya look like a pair of besties about to take a selfie.
This poor lad in Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, South Africa is filled with regret – maybe he’s remembering some more incriminating photos from the previous night?
The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards, in association with Nomad Tanzania, Natural High Safaris, Nikon UK, Kenya Airways and One Vision, took place in London on 11 November.
Already looking ahead to next year, the competition is open to amateur and professional photographers, and the top prize this year was a Nikon D750 camera plus a seven-day photographic safari with Joynson-Hicks.
While good for a laugh, the competition is intended to raise awareness for international wildlife conservation charity the Born Free Foundation. Born Free works worldwide to protect animals in the wild, rescuing vulnerable animals and providing lifetime care in bush sanctuaries.
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