WPY 2017

Photograph Details

Finalist 2017

Behaviour: Birds

Jari Heikkinen, Finland

Breakfast at dawn

Jari arrived before dawn to photograph a pair of divers. His attention was on the adult preening nearby when the other landed with a skidding splash right in front of his floating hide, gripping their chick’s breakfast in its beak. Light bounced off ripples, fish and feathers, creating an explosion of sparkles that was, Jari says, ‘heavenly’.

With waterproof feathers and powerful feet, red-throated divers actively hunt fish, like this vendace, underwater. Perfectly adapted for swimming, they are clumsy on land. The couple will perform a pair-bonding ritual several times a day, proclaiming their ownership of a territory. Both adults help to raise the chicks.

Technical specification

Nikon D4S; 600mm f4 lens and 1.4x extender; 1/640 sec at f20 (−1.7 e/v); ISO 1600; Manfrotto tripod and video head.


Lake Herajärvi, Suomenniemi, Finland: latitude 61.326233, longitude 27.450584 Lake Herajärvi, Suomenniemi, Finland: latitude 61.326233, longitude 27.450584

Lake Herajärvi, Suomenniemi, Finland

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Jari Heikkinen

Jari Heikkinen, Finland

Jari's passion is nature photography, and his four children now also have this as their hobby. He has been photographing nature for over 35 years. For many years now he and his children have been taking trips to Finland to see, experience and take several pictures of nature.