WPY 2017

Photograph Details

Finalist 2017

Animal Portraits

Jaime Culebras, Spain

Toad with attitude

The moon shone bright over the Tiputini River, making it easy for Jaime to find his way as he searched for nocturnal wildlife. A huge smooth-sided toad was clambering and hopping along the river bank. Eventually the toad paused to rest, and Jaime noticed its belly, speckled with white spots ‘like stars in the sky’.

Yasuní National Park is one of the most biodiverse regions on Earth, with 150 different species of amphibians alone. Smooth-sided toads can look after themselves, actively squirting a toxin from glands around their shoulders. Their paradise, however, is increasingly under threat – new oil reserves have recently been found below the surface.

Technical specification

Canon 6D; Sigma 24mm lens; 30 sec at f4 and f16; ISO 500; two Yongnuo Speedlite flashes; softbox; Manfrotto tripod.


Yasuní National Park, Ecuador: latitude -0.708371, longitude -76.254524 Yasuní National Park, Ecuador: latitude -0.708371, longitude -76.254524

Yasuní National Park, Ecuador

Intellectual property rights to all WPY images are retained by the photographers. Reproduction without prior written consent constitutes an actionable infringement. For usage enquiries please contact us.

Sign up to receive emails from the Natural History Museum about events and exhibitions, including Wildlife Photographer of the Year.



Love this image?

Choose your favourite from this year's collection. You can only choose once.

Top five favourites

Jaime Culebras

Jaime Culebras, Spain

Jaime is a biologist living in Ecuador, where he works as a curator and researcher of reptiles and amphibians, and as a wildlife photographer. He co-founded the Photo Wildlife Tour and is a member of the Big Mammals Conservation project and the Vida Silvestre Ecuador Foundation, which works to end the illegal wildlife trade.

  • The tyre nightjar