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Wildlife Photographer of the Year announces new Chair of the jury ahead of fifty-ninth competition

The Natural History Museum’s acclaimed Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition has announced Kathy Moran, former Deputy Director of Photography of National Geographic Magazine, as the Chair of the jury of the fifty-ninth edition. 

The Natural History Museum’s acclaimed Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition has announced Kathy Moran, former Deputy Director of Photography of National Geographic Magazine, as the Chair of the jury of the fifty-ninth edition. 

Kathy will join an international panel of six professionals at the Natural History Museum in London in February to select just 100 winning images from thousands of entries from around the globe. 

This year’s esteemed international jury are:

  • Kathy Moran (USA) - Chair of the Jury, editor
  • Lucas Bustamante (Ecuador), wildlife conservation photojournalist 
  • Celina Chien (The Netherlands/Canada), artist and storyteller 
  • Melissa Groo (USA), wildlife photographer  
  • Miranda Lowe (UK), Principal Curator, Crustacea and Cnidaria, Natural History Museum 
  • Dhritiman Mukherjee (India), wildlife and conservation photographer 
  • Stefano Unterthiner (Italy), wildlife and conservation photographer

The competition is open to photographers of all ages, nationalities and experience levels. Each entry will be judged anonymously on its originality, narrative, and ethical practice. 

To all entrants, Kathy Moran, editor and Chair of the jury, says ‘Be original. Trust in your work. Don’t second guess the jury. Let your vision shine.’

From characterful portraits to fascinating behaviour and underwater worlds to conservation storytelling, the 19 categories of the annual competition suit a wide range of interests and expertise.  

‘To have witnessed the evolution of the categories through the years underscores the competition’s commitment to the natural world, conservation storytelling, impactful photography and engagement with a broader range of photographers,’ comments Kathy.  

Gemma Ward, competition manager, says ‘I invite everyone and anyone to enter Wildlife Photographer of the Year. Let’s give the judges unforgettable images; lets pull at their heartstrings and have them leap off their seats with excitement in the judging room. I love it when they do this.’

Awarded photographers will see their image premiered in a breathtaking exhibition at the Natural History Museum in London before it embarks on a global tour and attend the glittering awards ceremony hosted in the Natural History Museum's iconic building in London. The overall Grand Title winner and young Grand Title winner also receive a substantial cash prize.

A call for all photographers

Calling for entries from photographers across the world, Wildlife Photographer of the Year is keen for submissions to reflect a variety of perspectives, locations and approaches. 

Wildlife Photographer of the Year is also particularly encouraging more entries from girls, women and nonbinary photographers, and will again offer discounted entry to members of organisations that support diversity in wildlife photography.

For a second year, entry fees for the fifty-ninth edition will be waived for photographers who live in 50 selected countries. The selection of countries is a result of multiple indicators that identify where the competition entry fee might be an economic barrier to enter. The countries are: 

Afghanistan, Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Honduras, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, North Korea, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Republic of Côte d'Ivoire, Rwanda, São Tomé and Príncipe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Yemen, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

For full details about the jury, competition rules, prizes and important dates visit nhm.ac.uk/wpy

Notes for editors

Fifty-ninth Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition

Opens for entries on Monday 17 October 2022.

  • Closing for entries at 11.30am GMT on Thursday 8 December 2022.
  • Entrants to the adult competition may enter up to 25 images for a £30 fee, which increases to £35 in the final week of the entry period from 11.30am GMT 1 December to 11.30am GMT 8 December.
  • An entry fee waiver has been introduced for photographers entering the adult competition who live in these 50 countries.
  • Rules and categories will be translated into 15 languages: Chinese, Japanese, Russian, French, Arabic, Finnish, German, Korean, Polish, Spanish, Italian, Bengali, Hindi and Portuguese.
  • Entrants aged 17 and under may enter up to 10 images for free.
  • Find out how to enter: www.nhm.ac.uk/wpy/competition

The winners of the fifty-eighth Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition will be announced at an awards ceremony at the Natural History Museum on Tuesday 11 October 2022. 

Tickets are now on sale for the redesigned exhibition at the Natural History Museum in London, opening to the public on Friday 14 October 2022. Global green energy company Ørsted is the associate sponsor for the upcoming exhibition at the Natural History Museum.   

About Wildlife Photographer of the Year:

Wildlife Photographer of the Year was founded in 1965 by BBC Wildlife Magazine, then called Animals. The Natural History Museum joined forces in 1984 to create the competition as it is known today. The competition is now run and owned by the Natural History Museum.

About the Natural History Museum:

The Natural History Museum is both a world-leading science research centre and the most-visited indoor attraction in the UK last year. With a vision of a future in which both people and the planet thrive, it is uniquely positioned to be a powerful champion for balancing humanity’s needs with those of the natural world.    

It is custodian of one of the world’s most important scientific collections comprising over 80 million specimens accessed by researchers from all over the world both in person and via over 50 billion digital data downloads to date. The Museum’s 350 scientists are finding solutions to the planetary emergency from biodiversity loss through to the sustainable extraction of natural resources.    

The Museum uses its global reach and influence to meet its mission to create advocates for the planet - to inform, inspire and empower everyone to make a difference for nature. We welcome millions of visitors through our doors each year, our website has had 17 million visits in the last year and our touring exhibitions have been seen by around 20 million people in the last 10 years.  

Media contact

For access to high-resolution images or to arrange interviews with jury members or spokespeople, please contact Josephine Higgins at the Natural History Museum Press Office.

Tel: +44 (0)20 7942 5106

Mobile: +44 (0) 7799 690151

Email: wildpress@nhm.ac.uk

Facebook: @wildlifephotographeroftheyear

Twitter: @NHM_WPY

Instagram: @nhm_wpy

Hashtag for the 2023 competition: #WPY59