Check out 43 incredible nature images from Australian awards

19 Aug 2016153 Shares

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2016 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year finalist (and our favourite): ‘Celestial terrestrial’ – Southern calamari squid, Matthew Smith. All images supplied by South Australian Museum

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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”.

Nature photography

“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

Overall winner: ‘Piercing headache’ by Matthew McIntosh of Queensland 2016 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year

Overall winner: ‘Piercing headache’ by Matthew McIntosh of Queensland

Animal Behaviour

Winner: Glaucus atlanticus, blue glaucus – Matty Smith 2016 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year

Winner: ‘Glaucus atlanticus’ – blue glaucus, by Matty Smith

Runner-up: Mud skipping, Mudskippers gobiidae – Georgina Steytler 2016 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year

Runner-up: ‘Mud skipping’ – Mudskippers gobiidae – Georgina Steytler

Finalist: ‘A fishy present’ - Crested tern, by Georgina Steytler 2016 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year

Finalist: ‘A fishy present’ – Crested tern, by Georgina Steytler

2016 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year Finalist: Breath – ‘Humpback Whale’, mother and calf, by Vanessa Mignon. 

Finalist: Breath – ‘Humpback Whale’, mother and calf, by Vanessa Mignon.

Finalist: Rainbow bee-eaters, Merops Ornatus – Mary Hartney 2016 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year

Finalist: ‘Lunchtime – Rainbow bee-eaters, Merops Ornatus, by Mary Hartley

Justin Gilligan

Finalist: ‘Clash of the titans’ – Giant cuttlefish, by Justin Gilligan

Animal Portrait

Winner: ‘Red whip ambush’ – Painted flutemouth, by Wade Hughes 2016 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year

Winner: ‘Red whip ambush’ – Painted flutemouth, by Wade Hughes

Runner-up: ‘Blue-eyed flatback’ – Flatback turtle, by Matt Curnock 2016 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year

Runner-up: ‘Blue-eyed flatback’ – Flatback turtle, by Matt Curnock

Nature photography Finalist (and our favourite): ‘Celestial terrestrial’ – Southern calamari squid, Matthew Smith 2016 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year

Finalist (and our favourite): ‘Celestial terrestrial’ – Southern calamari squid, Matthew Smith

Finalist: ‘Surprise’ – Red fox, by Mark Doro

Finalist: ‘Surprise’ – Red fox, by Mark Doro

Animal Habitat

Winner: ‘Well, hello’ – Smallspotted combtooth blenny, by David Westcott Nature photography

Winner: ‘Well, hello’ – Smallspotted combtooth blenny, by David Westcott

Runner-up: ‘Home shrinking home’ – Pink anemonefish, by Wayne Osborn Nature photography

Runner-up: ‘Home shrinking home’ – Pink anemonefish, by Wayne Osborn

Finalist: ‘Boo’ – Fernbird, by Trevor Penfold

Finalist: ‘Boo’ – Fernbird, by Trevor Penfold

Finalist: ‘Gentoo vs The Mountain’ – Gentoo penguin, by Joshua Holko Nature photography

Finalist: ‘Gentoo vs The Mountain’ – Gentoo penguin, by Joshua Holko

Finalist: ‘King of the desert’ – Western desert taipan, by Max Jackson Nature photography

Finalist: ‘King of the desert’ – Western desert taipan, by Max Jackson

Botanical

Winner: ‘Aligning planets’ – Grass tree, by Julie Fletcher Nature photography

Winner: ‘Aligning planets’ – Grass tree, by Julie Fletcher

Runner-up: ‘Mist shower’ – New England national park, by Drew Hopper Nature photography

Runner-up: ‘Mist shower’ – New England national park, by Drew Hopper

Finalist: ‘Luminous fungi’ – Ghost fungi, by Maree Clout

Finalist: ‘Luminous fungi’ – Ghost fungi, by Maree Clout

Landscape

Winner: ‘Desert Patterns’ – Kata Tjuta, by Julie Fletcher Nature photography

Winner: ‘Desert Patterns’ – Kata Tjuta, by Julie Fletcher

Runner-up: ‘Transcendence’ – Southern Alps, by William Patino

Runner-up: ‘Transcendence’ – Southern Alps, by William Patino

Finalist: ‘Hang in there’ – Northern Adelaide Hills, by Ben Goode

Finalist: ‘Hang in there’ – Northern Adelaide Hills, by Ben Goode

Finalist: ‘A mist divided’ – Eucalypt forest, by Scott Butler

Finalist: ‘A mist divided’ – Eucalypt forest, by Scott Butler

Monochrome

Winner: ‘Winters path’ – Brumby, by Charles Davis

Winner: ‘Winters path’ – Brumby, by Charles Davis

Runner-up: ‘A wet soggy morning’ – Leura Falls Creek, by Peter Hill

Runner-up: ‘A wet soggy morning’ – Leura Falls Creek, by Peter Hill

Finalist: ‘Gerson awakens’ – Mount Gerson, by Luke Tscharke

Finalist: ‘Gerson awakens’ – Mount Gerson, by Luke Tscharke

Finalist: ‘Rangi dreams’ – Rangitoto, by Susan Blick

Finalist: ‘Rangi dreams’ – Rangitoto, by Susan Blick

Interpretive

Winner: ‘Swaying’ by Dianne Galbraith

Winner: ‘Swaying’ by Dianne Galbraith

Runner-up: ‘Float’ by Joel Durbridge

Runner-up: ‘Float’ by Joel Durbridge

Finalist: ‘Web worlds’ by Keith Lightbody

Finalist: ‘Web worlds’ by Keith Lightbody

Finalist: ‘Kite flight’ by Marc Lynch

Finalist: ‘Kite flight’ by Marc Lynch

Finalist: ‘Cockatoos’ by Andrew Davoll

Finalist: ‘Cockatoos’ by Andrew Davoll

Junior

Winner: ‘Rockpool’ – Minnamurra, by Ryan North

Winner: ‘Rockpool’ – Minnamurra, by Ryan North

Runner-up: ‘Toothy grin’ – Saltwater croc, by Robert Irwin

Runner-up: ‘Toothy grin’ – Saltwater croc, by Robert Irwin

Finalist: ‘Jewel of the jungle’ – Green tree python, by Brodie James

Finalist: ‘Jewel of the jungle’ – Green tree python, by Brodie James

Finalist: ‘Tiny temper’ – Coastal carpet python, by Brodie James

Finalist: ‘Tiny temper’ – Coastal carpet python, by Brodie James

Our Impact

Runner-up: ‘The whale sharks of Cendrewasih Bay’, by Alex Varani

Runner-up: ‘The whale sharks of Cendrewasih Bay’, by Alex Varani

Winner: ‘The killing field’ – Kangaroo, by Doug Gimesy

Winner: ‘The killing field’ – Kangaroo, by Doug Gimesy

Threatened Species

Winner: ‘Palm grove dingo’ – Dingo, by Bret Charman

Winner: ‘Palm grove dingo’ – Dingo, by Bret Charman

Runner-up: ‘Buller’s Albatross’ by Georgina Settler

Runner-up: ‘Buller’s Albatross’ by Georgina Settler

Finalist: ‘Four in flight’ – Carnaby’s black cockatoos, by Geoff Hunter

Finalist: ‘Four in flight’ – Carnaby’s black cockatoos, by Geoff Hunter

Finalist: ‘Close encounter’ – Grey nurse shark, by Matthew Tworkowski

Finalist: ‘Close encounter’ – Grey nurse shark, by Matthew Tworkowski

Finalist: ‘Mount Lewis spiny crayfish’ by Ryan Francis

Finalist: ‘Mount Lewis spiny crayfish’ by Ryan Francis

Gordon Hunt is a journalist at Siliconrepublic.com

editorial@siliconrepublic.com