WPY 2011

Photograph Details

Highly commended 2011

Behaviour: Birds

Gennady Fedorenko, Russia

High-dive precision

This is the moment that the Cape gannet gets its fish. The corkscrew bubble-trail and fleeing sardines reveal the trajectory of the bird's 10-metre dive from 30 metres above the water off the coast of Port St Johns, South Africa. The annual 'sardine run' along the southeastern coast of southern Africa is one of the world's great migration events. Sharks, dolphins, whales, seabirds and, in this instance, Fedorenko join in the hunt. 'The gannets were mesmerizing to watch,' says Fedorenko, 'and as graceful below water as they are in the air.' But their dives are so fast and the action is over so quickly that 'getting this shot is as much luck as skill,' says Fedorenko, modestly.

Technical specification

Canon EOS-1Ds + 15mm f2.8 lens; 1/160 sec at f18; ISO 640; Sea & Sea MDX Mark III housing; Inon Z240 strobes.

Port St. Johns, South Africa: latitude -31.6288, longitude 29.5369 Port St. Johns, South Africa: latitude -31.6288, longitude 29.5369

Port St. Johns, South Africa

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