WPY 2012

Photograph Details

Commended 2012

Animals in their Environment

Jeanine Lovett, USA

Ice birds

This giant iceberg, drifting just off the South Orkney Islands in the Southern Ocean, was as tall as a 14-storey building. At some point in its being, it had rolled over, to expose a dazzling underbelly of water-textured layers. It was the perfect backdrop. Jeanine had been watching a flock of Cape petrels soaring, swooping and dipping down over the sea, their long wings catching the updraughts and carrying them at speed. As the boat started to move around the iceberg, she realised that the birds would fly straight past the ice, and she raced across the deck to grab the moment. ‘The beauty of the scene took my breath away,’ she says. ‘The photograph gives the impression that the berg was right beside our ship, but the petrels with their 60-centimetre wingspans show the true scale.’

Technical specification

Nikon D200 + 80-400mm f4.5-5.6 lens at 370mm; 1/1000 sec at f6.3; ISO 250.


South Orkney Islands, Southern Ocean: latitude -53.265213, longitude -60.915443 South Orkney Islands, Southern Ocean: latitude -53.265213, longitude -60.915443

South Orkney Islands, Southern Ocean

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Jeanine Lovett, USA