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12 Poignant & Beautiful Wildlife Photographs of The Year

 
The prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year (WPY) award, which is owned and managed by the world-renowned Natural History Museum, adjudged its winners recently. However, the museum has selected 25 of the best images from the WPY 2019 competition shortlist. Those photographs have now been put online for the Wildlife Photographer of the Year, LUMIX People’s Choice collection. You can browse the collection and vote for your favorite image. You have until February 4, 2020, at 2 pm GMT to make your choice.
Wildlife photography awards present a great chance for conveying a strong message about nature and its vagaries. Here, we have selected some of the best photographs from the People’s Choice collection. These pictures put emphasis on the myriad faces of the animal kingdom – some are beautiful and tender while some are poignant and heart-breaking.
#1.Wildlife Photos of the Year  Caribbean flamingos
“Beak to beak” 
Photographer: Claudio Contreras Koob
These magnificent Caribbean flamingos were photographed in the Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve in the state of Yucatán. The chick here is less than 5 days old and will stay in the nest for close to 6 days before it moves out to forage for food. 
#2.
Wildlife Photos of the Year golden eagle

“Inquisitive” 

Photographer: Audan Rikardsen 

The golden eagle is a remarkable bird of prey. It took Audun 3 years to capture this particular eagle in northern Norway. The camera set up by the photographer greatly intrigued the bird and its inquisitiveness at the strange object made for a wonderful moment. 

#3.
Wildlife Photos of the Year orangutans

“Losing the fight”

Photographer: Aaron Gekosk

Like other wild animals, orangutans, too, deserve to be in their natural habitat. Unfortunately, they’ve been used as a form of entertainment by humans for long - either in circuses or in other tourist attractions. Photographer Aaron Gekoski has attempted to express a poignant message through this frame.

#4. 

Wildlife Photos of the Year red tooth triggerfish.
“A pulsing sea”
Photographer: David Doubilet
Verde Island Passage – a strait that separates the islands of Luzon and Mindoro in the Philippines - teems with schools of red tooth triggerfish. Here they are seen forming surreal silhouettes above a river of convict blennies, giving us a great sight of this unique marine ecosystem.
#5.
Wildlife Photos of the Year puma

“Trustful” 

Photographer: Ingo Ardnt

The Torres del Paine National Park, in Patagonia, Chile, has one of the richest puma populations in the world. However, these elusive animals are very hard to track. Photographer Ingo Ardnt followed the pumas of the national park for over two years before he could capture this amazing click. This female had gotten used to Ardnt’s presence and one day she fell asleep when he was nearby. When she opened her eyes, the photographer was able to frame the puma at her most relaxed state. 

#6.

Wildlife Photos of the Year humpback whale

“Teamwork” 

Photographer: Jake Davis

In the Great Bear Rainforest of British Columbia, Canada, humpback whales were seen displaying exceptional teamwork by photographer Jake Davis. Here, the leader whale was diving to spot the fish at the moment it was photographed. Once the prey was located the remaining pod members arrived, blowing bubbles to create a net to trap the fish.  

#7.

Wildlife Photos of the Year giant panda

“Captive” 

Photographer: Salvador Colvée Nebot

A giant panda is considered one of nature’s most adorable-looking animals. Here, one of them presents a rather grim image while seen sitting in its cage in a breeding center in Shaanxi, China. These breeding centers have been established to raise giant pandas safely and rerelease them into the wild. However, it doesn’t look like these endangered animals are being treated appropriately. 

#8. 
Wildlife Photos of the Year black rhinos
“The surrogate mother” 
Photographer: Martin Buzora
Elias Mugambi, a ranger at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in northern Kenya, has dedicated a major part of life tending to orphaned black rhinos. The motherless rhinos here have lost their mothers mostly due to poaching and Elias does a commendable job of looking after them. Here he is seen sharing a tender moment with Kitui, one of the young members of the black rhino community in the park. 
#9.
Wildlife Photos of the Year Marmots

“Family get-together”

Photographer: Michael Schober

Marmots in Hohe Tauern National Park, Austria, have become used to the presence of humans. These furry little animals allow photographers to observe them and shoot them from close quarters. Here, a family of marmots is captured sharing a joyful moment.

#10. 

Wildlife Photos of the Year jaguars

“Matching outfits” 

Photographer: Michel Zoghzoghi

The Pantanal forest in Brazil is home to several jaguars. Photographer Michel Zoghzoghi was on a boat in the Três Irmãos River, observing wildlife, when he suddenly saw a mother jaguar and her cub dragging a massive dead anaconda from the water onto the banks. Amazingly, the anaconda shared a similar pattern to that of the two jaguars. 
#11.
Wildlife Photos of the Year mice

“Station squabble” 

Photographer: Sam Rowley

The London Underground Metro system has a huge mice population that is always on the lookout for crumbs of food left behind by passengers. Photographer Sam Rowley wanted to capture the rodents in action and saw a pair engaging in a short brawl over food. While the fight lasted only a few seconds, Rowley was fortunate enough to snap them during combat. 

#12.

Wildlife Photos of the Year penguins

“Training session” 

Photographer: Stefan Christmann

When photographer Stefan Christmann initially encountered this penguin couple in Atka Bay, Antarctica, he assumed they were looking at their egg. However, on closer observation, he found that they were actually with a snowball. Apparently, these assiduous creatures were practicing egg transfer and training themselves for when the real egg arrived. It is very likely that an extraordinary moment like this has never been shot before with penguins. 
 

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