Marco had to stay focused on the European pond turtle as it glided swiftly across the shadows on the lookout for prey, stirring up clouds of mud. As sunbeams fell through the gaps in the riverside vegetation, Marco captured this atmospheric portrait. ‘Conveying a sense of place was essential,’ explains Marco.
The shy European pond turtle, which spends most of its time submerged at the bottom of muddy waters, is threatened by water pollution, habitat loss and invasive American red-eared terrapins. Populations are also threatened by the pet trade – their bright yellow- or gold-flecked shells are attractive to collectors.
Nikon D90; Tokina 10-17mm f3.5-4.5 lens at 10mm; 1/60 sec at f11; ISO 400; Isotta housing.
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Marco Colombo, Italy
Marco is a professional wildlife photographer and holds nature conferences and photography workshops. He works with schools, in regional parks and as a scientific consultant for an Italian TV nature programme. His photos have been awarded in many international wildlife photography contests.