The theme for this year’s photography competition was ‘nature during lockdown’. With many of us spending more time at home over the last few months, we have been reminded of the importance of our green spaces, and engaging more with the local wildlife we find around us, strengthening our connection with the natural environment.
We asked you to submit your best photographs of nature during this time; taken in your garden, local green space, or even from your window. In response, we received over 100 entries from across the world, with an exceptionally high standard of images submitted.
To determine the winning entry, the judges were asked to rank their favourite five photographs from first, worth five points, to fifth, worth one point.
The winner, with almost double the final score of any other entry, was Jack Hague’s magnificent image of a bank vole. Jack has been awarded free membership to the IES for one year at Affiliate grade.
Describing capturing the winning photograph, Jack said “I sat on the floor of the woodland for around 45 minutes following this little mammal scurrying around the leaf litter foraging for seeds, berries and insects.”
A selection of the highest-scoring images will be included in the June edition of the environmental SCIENTIST and can also be viewed below.
Peter Crome captured this spectacular image of a robin feeding its chick, and noted: "After hatching in a nest in a hole in our neighbour's wall, there were three fledgling robins running around our garden keeping their parents very busy with food deliveries for a couple of days. Our dog, Schubie, kept pointing them out to us hiding in patches of wildflowers and in the ivy and he protected them from a visiting cat on several occasions until they eventually took flight."
'Social Distancing Meadow Pipit' by Jamie Wood.
Of his magnificent image of highland cattle taken in Barlestone, Leicestershire, Phil Underwood said: "They were very inquisitive and provided some great photographic opportunities."
'Emergence' by Emma Crosby. During the recent uncharacteristically warm weather, Emma noticed an abundance of damselflies and dragonflies visiting her pond in North Devon and was able to capture this spectacular image of a dragonfly molt.
Of the image, Emma said: "My camera focus was on the dragonfly himself, and it was only afterwards that I noticed the molt from which I think he had just emerged."
A selection of the highest-scoring entries. Clockwise from top left image: Douglas Tillbury, Sara Gowers, Jimi Irwin, Sara Gowers, Hugo Siedlecki, Douglas Tillbury, Emma Crosby, Jimi Irwin, Jack Hague, and Sarah Freeman.