WPY 2010

Photograph Details

Runner-up 2010

Wildlife Photojournalist Award

Brian Skerry, United States of America

Scraping the bottom

This is how shrimps (prawns) are caught off La Paz in the Sea of Cortez, Mexico. Whether a trawl net is small, like this one, or large, the design is similar worldwide: two steel doors help keep open the maw of the net as a boat drags it along. Such a design is hugely effective, catching shrimps but also everything else in its path. As it drags along the bottom, it also destroys whole communities, including the corals and sponges that provide habitat for so many other animals and which may take years to grow back.

Technical specification

Nikon D2X + 16mm lens; 1/160 sec at f11; ISO 320; Subal housing; Sea & Sea YS90 strobes.


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