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Incredible Bird Photos from the BPOTY Contest

Every year, a panel of bird photography enthusiasts comes together to choose the winners of the prestigious Bird Photographer of the Year Awards, the problem being that there are just too many stunning pictures of these colorful birds to choose from, and only so many awards to give out. Here are some of the most incredible pictures that didn’t get the prize, but did get a nod from the judges, as well as some winners of the previous years.
1. Common buzzard (hawk in North America) caught a second before hitting the water
Bird pictures: buzzard
2. The great cormorant is among the most efficient fishers in nature
Bird pictures: cormorant
3. Be vewwy vewwy quiet, this black-crowned night-heron is on the hunt!
Bird pictures: night heron
4. Despite the James Bond connotation, the common goldeneye isn’t very sneaky or spylike, at all, and can actually be pretty aggressive
Bird pictures: goldeneye
5. This picture is aptly titled “camouflage”
Bird pictures: camouflage
6. Another common sea-duck, the eider has a beautifully-patterned plumage during mating season
Bird pictures: eider
7. The crown-crested hoopoe is monogamous, and during nesting, the male hunts for the female, as well as himself
Bird pictures: hoopoe
8. This bearded silhouette belongs to the capercaillie, a type of grouse (or gamefowl) that is related to pheasants. This male is in the midst of a mating call
Bird pictures: capercaillie
9. Ever wondered how hummingbirds get to all of that sweet nectar? A long, thin tongue helps a lot
Bird pictures: hummingbird tongue
10. Wild mallards on a lake
Bird pictures: mallards
11. Somebody call Hitchcock, it's happening!
Bird pictures: starlings
12. Hummingbirds move so fast, they often seem like a blur. This is what they actually look like mid-flight
Bird pictures: hummingbird
13. Note the hummingbird’s translucent gossamer feathers
Bird pictures: hummingbird silhouette
14. A raven flying through the snow
Bird pictures: raven in snow
15. This is a ptarmigan, another northerly member of the grouse family. The effect of the bird blending into the background was accomplished through overexposure
Bird pictures: ptarmigan
16. The little swift is a master of complex aerial maneuvers
Bird pictures: little swift
17. The photographer called this picture “Black Friday”, likening it to customer squabbles during the shopping bonanza
Bird pictures: flamingos
18. All owls are fierce hunters, but their size varies greatly. Pygmy owls average at 6 inches (15 cm) long from tail to tip
Bird pictures: pygmy owl
19. Showing the fish who’s the king
Bird pictures: kingfisher
20. The southern carmine bee-eater. You’d never guess what its diet consists of
Bird pictures: bee eater
21. Could you… not?
Bird pictures: white bird blue background
22. A robin taking advantage of the soft, upturned soil
Bird pictures: robin worm
Image source: BPOTY, BPOTY on Facebook
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