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First taste of nature's best images

30 September 2005

The highly commended images for this year's Wildlife Photographer of the Year have been announced today.

The images were selected from more than 16,500 entries for the world's largest and most prestigious wildlife photographic competition. The diverse images include gentoo penguins surfing onto the shore (image shown at top of page © Andy Rouse, UK) and a gorilla in the rain (image shown below © Joe McDonald, USA).

The highly commended images will join the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition, which displays all 84 winning photographs from the 2005 competition. The exhibition opens on Saturday 22 October 2005 and runs until 23 April 2006.

Gorilla in the rain © Joe McDonald, USA

Gorilla in the rain © Joe McDonald, USA

'This is an exciting first glimpse of the best photographs from this year's competition,' said Deborah Sage, Competition Manager. 'Captured through photographers' artistry and dedication, the winning images celebrate the beauty of nature and remind us that we are its guardians.'

Every picture tells a story, and each image in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition is captioned to reveal the tale of how and why it was taken.

The Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition is organised by the by the Natural History Museum and BBC Wildlife Magazine.