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Split Shot Overall Winner of the 2024 British Wildlife Photography Awards
By Ian Bongso-Seldrup, March 15, 2024 @ 09:30 AM (EST)

Winner: “Ocean Drifter” by Ryan Stalker

This year’s British Wildlife Photography Awards (BWPA) have been announced, and the grand prize winner has turned out to be an unusual over-under of a colony of goose barnacles attached to a floating soccer ball. Captured by Ryan Stalker in the waters off the Isle of Portland in Dorset, England, the powerful image highlights the unseen dangers of pollution in our oceans—in this case, an invasive species hitching a ride across the ocean.

“Above the water is just a football. But below the waterline is a colony of creatures,” says Stalker. “The football was washed up in Dorset after making a huge ocean journey across the Atlantic. More rubbish in the sea could increase the risk of more creatures making it to our shores and becoming invasive species.” Stalker’s image took top honors in the “Coast and Marine” category, while the runner-up was Dan Bolt’s glowing image of a fireworks anemone captured in Loch Fyne, Scotland.

More than 14,000 wildlife images were submitted into 10 categories for adults and three age groups of children. Check out the competition website to see the other category winners, runners-up and highly commended entries.

Don’t forget that this year’s Photo Competition for UN World Oceans Day is currently accepting entries. Make sure to enter your best work into the contest’s five categories!

Runner-up, Coast and Marine: “Fireworks in the Night” by Dan Bolt

Highly Commended, Coast and Marine: “Galactic Gooseberries” by Billy Arthur

Highly Commended, Coast and Marine: “Hyperspace” by Grace Bailey

Highly Commended, Coast and Marine: “Pipefish Camouflage” by Shannon Moran

Highly Commended, Coast and Marine: “Time and Tide” by Jeremy Walker




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