From nesting flamingos to hunting owls to a snake-wrestling heron, photographers from around the world captured a variety of winged wonder in this selection of images from the Bird Photographer of the Year competition, which recently announced its winners. The flamingo image won top honours, including a prize of £5,000 ($8,133 AUD).
"The standard of photography was extremely high and myself and the other judges were treated to some fantastic bird photographs," says Chris Packham, head judge on the panel of experts, "but congratulations must go to Alejandro Prieto Rojas for his sublime image of flamingos, an incredible balance of colour, composition and emotion.”
The second annual contest, which is run jointly by Nature Photographers Ltd and the British Trust for Ornithology, recognises excellent bird photography in categories including attention to detail, bird behaviour, and birds in the garden. Among these colourful, dramatic photos, you're bound to find a bird you've never seen, or a new facet of one you already know.
Header Image: This shot of a grey heron in Hungary won a silver award in the attention to detail category. PHOTOGRAPH BY AHMAD AL-ESSA