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Ten shortlisted entries have been released for this year’s Royal Society of Biology Photography Competition, from both amateur and young photographers.

The shortlisted photos showcase stunning images captured across the globe, including Canada, India and Kenya, and feature a variety of species in motion, with fluttering birds, jumping insects and territorial showdowns.

The theme of this year’s competition was ‘Capturing movement,’ and more than 2,500 photos were submitted by more than 900 entrants. From these, four entries were shortlisted for the Young Photographer of the Year award and six entries were shortlisted for Photographer of the Year.

The RSB Photography Competition has two categories - the Young Photographer of the Year category is suitable for photographers below the age of 18, with a top prize of £500, whilst the Photographer of the Year category is open to adult photographers who can win £1000.

The winners of the competition will be announced at the RSB Annual Awards Ceremony on 10th October at The Francis Crick Institute, London, as part of this year’s Biology Week.

The competition was judged by Tim Harris, Nature Library and Bluegreen Pictures; Tom Hartman, program chair of MSc in Biological Photography and Imaging at the University of Nottingham; Alex Hyde, natural history photographer and lecturer at the University of Nottingham; and Linda Pitkin, underwater photographer.

The RSB wishes to thank Eppendorf for its continued support of this competition.

Photographer of the Year shortlist:


Title: Demob happy

Photographer: Nick Edwards

Location: Thorness Bay, near Cowes, Isle of Wight, UK


Have you ever seen a beetle smile? This Red soldier beetle looks elated as it seemingly strikes a pose for the camera. The common red soldier beetle is usually spotted from June to August, often in mating pairs, in grasslands and woodlands. There are about 40 different species of red soldier beetle in the UK, all with slightly different markings.

Title: Flying over sunshine

Photographer: Kristhian Castro

Location: Cali, Valle del Cauca, Colombia


This photo captures the stunning greens, blues and oranges of this hummingbird Anthracothorax nigricollis as it flies during sunset. Members of this family of birds (Trochilidae) can flap their wings up to 75 times per second. At faster shutter speeds (1/200sec) the wings appear static, so Kristhian used the setting sun as a backdrop to capture its movement.

Title: Territorial fight

Photographer: Sundhir Gaikward

Location: Sundarban Tiger Reserve, India


These mudskippers are highly territorial and usually chase away intruders. Mudskippers are amphibious fish, meaning they can leave the water for extended periods of time, and mudskippers in particular are able to survive in air for multiple days. They breathe through the moist lining of their mouth and throat, so they prefer high humidity, and are often found in muddy mangrove swamps.

Title: Tropical acrobatics

Photographer: Adrià López Baucells

Location: Manaus, Brazil


This stunning photograph is of an unidentified South American marsupial, although the characteristic black markings on its face indicates it might be a mouse opossum. These small creatures are nocturnal, and feed on bugs, fruit, and bird eggs.

Title: Falling leaves are blue

Photographer: Kallol Mukherjee

Location: Northern part of Sikkim


This photo captures the near symmetrical flight of a large flock of more than 200 Grandala birds. Capturing these birds on film can be quite the challenge, as they remain at very high altitude in Himalayan terrain for almost eight months of the year. The birds will descend to 8000ft only when the upper areas are completely covered in snow and food becomes scarce.

Title: Male polar bear shaking off snow

Photographer: Ian Stone

Location: Hudson Bay, Canada


This stunning photo is of a polar bear shaking off snow as it walks through the Hudson Bay, Canada. For two hours before the photo was taken, a blizzard had completely covered the surrounding area and the polar bear in snow. Ian waited until the weather calmed to capture the bear standing up and shaking the snow from its fur, ready to continue with its journey to the sea to hunt for seals.

Young Photographer of the Year shortlist:


Title: Fighting
Photographer: Carlos Perez Naval
Location: Navaseca, Ciudad Real, Spain


This amazing photo, taken by Carlos Perez Naval in Spain, is of two white-headed ducks, fighting over something in the water (probably a fish!).

Title: The stampede
Photographer: Lillian Quinn
Location: Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya


Lillian Quinn has snapped a stampede of a large herd of zebras crossing the Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya. The zebras, hoping to dodge crocodiles as they head to the other side of the river, make the journey once a year.

Title: Hectic nature
Photographer: Will Lawson
Location: Hickling Broad, England


Will Lawson has captured this swallowtail butterfly, as it sat still for a moment whilst feeding. Even when such a majestic insect is resting, plenty else is still rushing around in a frenzy, such the wasp in the right of the frame.

Title: Playtime
Photographer: Amogh Gaikwad
Location: Tadoba Tiger Reserve, India


This stunning photo of a tiger after a successful hunt was taken by Amogh Gaikwad. After capturing its dinner, this 15-month old tiger cub decides to play with its dead prey.