WPY 2018

Photograph Details

Highly commended 2018

Urban Wildlife

Felix Heintzenberg, Germany / Sweden

City Fisher

The rusty metal rod at the opening of a sewerage outlet pipe was a favourite perch for kingfishers, giving them a view of the fish below. Felix visited the spot many times to study them. Seeing the photographic potential of the colourful scene, he used a gentle flash to highlight this particular bird against the dark opening.

Excellent hunters, kingfishers are also good indicators of high water quality. With better water treatment and bans on pollutants in some cities, these birds are slowly returning to urban areas. Kingfishers can struggle to find natural fishing perches in cities and so use whatever they can find, including shopping trollies and scrap metal.

Technical specification

Canon EOS-1D X + 100–400mm f4.5–5.6 lens at 110mm; 1/25 sec at f14; ISO 100; Speedlite 580EX II flash + two 540EZ flashes; Tripod; Pocket Wizard Plus II transceiver; Hide


River Höje, Lund, Sweden: latitude 55.70147, longitude 13.14735 River Höje, Lund, Sweden: latitude 55.70147, longitude 13.14735

River Höje, Lund, Sweden

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Felix Heintzenberg

Felix Heintzenberg, Germany / Sweden

Felix works as a wildlife photographer, writer and biology teacher. In recent years he has published six wildlife books, of which three have been awarded prestigious literature prizes.