Daisy's shortlisted image, showing a polar bear mother and cub

Daisy's shortlisted image, showing a polar bear mother and cub

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On the trail of polar bears

Wildlife photographer Daisy Gilardini describes her journey to document the lives of polar bear cubs in some of the most brutal temperatures on Earth.

Daisy's image, Hitching a ride, has been shortlisted for the Wildlife Photographer of the Year People's Choice award.

It shows a female polar bear and some surprising behaviour from one of her cubs.

The story behind the image

Daisy says, 'Every year, from February to March, an important event takes place in Wapusk National Park in Canada.

'Polar bears that entered maternity dens in October and gave birth in November are ready to leave for the first time, with their four-month-old cubs. The timing coincides with seals giving birth to their pups on the Hudson Bay pack ice, which means easy food for the polar bears.

'During this time of the year conditions are extremely challenging, with temperatures dropping to -54°C and winds gusting up to 60 kilometres per hour. Cold is a challenge for your equipment as well as for your body.

'If you are not comfortable you will not be able to focus on the job. Knowing how to dress is essential to avoid frostbite and hypothermia. Dressing in layers and avoiding sweating are vital to surviving in these situations.'

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