With frogs, cephalopods, sharks and more, the Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year competition was a doozy. Here are 43 images that stood out.
An orange-eyed tree frog has become a minor celebrity in Australia after an image of it won Matthew McIntosh the 2016 iteration of Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year.
Run by the South Australian Museum, McIntosh’s ‘Piercing headache’ shows the male frog being stung by numerous, bloodthirsty mosquitoes.
Taking home a top prize of AUS$10,000, plus a trip for two to the Subantarctic islands worth AUS$25,000, McIntosh’s opportunistic shot and subsequent win is a “massive achievement”.
“During [a road trip] we stopped to investigate a chorus of orange-eyed tree frogs calling from foliage around an old car tire filled with water from recent rain, with numerous males vying for the attention of nearby females,” McIntosh said.
“With my headlamp light failing I managed to take just one photo of uranotaenia mosquitos, also affectionately known as ‘frog flies,’ happily feeding from a frog’s head. Luckily it turned out more or less as I intended.
“When conducted in a non-invasive and non-destructive manner, nature photography has potential to facilitate a greater understanding and respect for the natural world, benefiting individuals and whole communities,” he said.
‘Piercing headache’ came up trumps after over 2,100 photographs were judged, with Brian Oldman, director of the South Australian Museum, lauding the “spectacular” standard this year.
With 10 categories to enter, below we have listed the winners, runners-up and some stand-out finalists. Enjoy!
Overall winner: ‘Piercing headache’ by Matthew McIntosh of Queensland
Winner: ‘Glaucus atlanticus’ – blue glaucus, by Matty Smith
Runner-up: ‘Mud skipping’ – Mudskippers gobiidae – Georgina Steytler
Finalist: ‘A fishy present’ – Crested tern, by Georgina Steytler
Finalist: Breath – ‘Humpback Whale’, mother and calf, by Vanessa Mignon.
Finalist: ‘Lunchtime – Rainbow bee-eaters, Merops Ornatus, by Mary Hartley
Finalist: ‘Clash of the titans’ – Giant cuttlefish, by Justin Gilligan
Winner: ‘Red whip ambush’ – Painted flutemouth, by Wade Hughes
Runner-up: ‘Blue-eyed flatback’ – Flatback turtle, by Matt Curnock
Finalist (and our favourite): ‘Celestial terrestrial’ – Southern calamari squid, Matthew Smith
Finalist: ‘Surprise’ – Red fox, by Mark Doro
Winner: ‘Well, hello’ – Smallspotted combtooth blenny, by David Westcott
Runner-up: ‘Home shrinking home’ – Pink anemonefish, by Wayne Osborn
Finalist: ‘Boo’ – Fernbird, by Trevor Penfold
Finalist: ‘Gentoo vs The Mountain’ – Gentoo penguin, by Joshua Holko
Finalist: ‘King of the desert’ – Western desert taipan, by Max Jackson
Winner: ‘Aligning planets’ – Grass tree, by Julie Fletcher
Runner-up: ‘Mist shower’ – New England national park, by Drew Hopper
Finalist: ‘Luminous fungi’ – Ghost fungi, by Maree Clout
Winner: ‘Desert Patterns’ – Kata Tjuta, by Julie Fletcher
Runner-up: ‘Transcendence’ – Southern Alps, by William Patino
Finalist: ‘Hang in there’ – Northern Adelaide Hills, by Ben Goode
Finalist: ‘A mist divided’ – Eucalypt forest, by Scott Butler
Winner: ‘Winters path’ – Brumby, by Charles Davis
Runner-up: ‘A wet soggy morning’ – Leura Falls Creek, by Peter Hill
Finalist: ‘Gerson awakens’ – Mount Gerson, by Luke Tscharke
Finalist: ‘Rangi dreams’ – Rangitoto, by Susan Blick
Winner: ‘Swaying’ by Dianne Galbraith
Runner-up: ‘Float’ by Joel Durbridge
Finalist: ‘Web worlds’ by Keith Lightbody
Finalist: ‘Kite flight’ by Marc Lynch
Finalist: ‘Cockatoos’ by Andrew Davoll
Winner: ‘Rockpool’ – Minnamurra, by Ryan North
Runner-up: ‘Toothy grin’ – Saltwater croc, by Robert Irwin
Finalist: ‘Jewel of the jungle’ – Green tree python, by Brodie James
Finalist: ‘Tiny temper’ – Coastal carpet python, by Brodie James
Runner-up: ‘The whale sharks of Cendrewasih Bay’, by Alex Varani
Winner: ‘The killing field’ – Kangaroo, by Doug Gimesy
Winner: ‘Palm grove dingo’ – Dingo, by Bret Charman
Runner-up: ‘Buller’s Albatross’ by Georgina Settler
Finalist: ‘Four in flight’ – Carnaby’s black cockatoos, by Geoff Hunter
Finalist: ‘Close encounter’ – Grey nurse shark, by Matthew Tworkowski
Finalist: ‘Mount Lewis spiny crayfish’ by Ryan Francis