Categories

Wildlife Photographer of the Year uses photography to celebrate the wonderful diversity of life, to inspire and inform and to create advocates for the planet. It champions ethical wildlife photography, rewarding truthful representations of nature that display respect for animals and the environment.

All category winners will be considered for the grand title, including one image from each entry into the multiple image categories

You may submit a total of 25 photos into the competition across the following categories. You can submit the same image into more than one category.

Black and white photos can be entered into any competition category.

Category information translated into 12 languages is available below.

Single image categories

Evoking atmosphere and a sense of place - with the habitat as a major element of the picture – to convey how an animal is an integral part of its environment.

Explore previous years' Animals in their Environment winners.

Revealing the personality of an individual or an intimate group of animals in a thought-provoking or memorable way.

Explore images that have previously won in the Animal Portraits category.

Revealing active behaviour that adds to our understanding of the nature of a species.

See previous winners from the Behaviour: Amphibians and Reptiles category.

Portraying memorable, unusual or dramatic behaviour.

See examples of winning images entered into the Behaviour: Birds category.

Revealing the most interesting or memorable behaviour of any of the multitude of smaller animals without backbones – whether on land, in the air, or in water.

Explore winning Behvaviour: Invertebrates photographs.

Portraying memorable, unusual or dramatic behaviour.

See previous winners from the Behaviour: Mammals category.

Reporting on the vital influence and importance of marine environments for us or the planet. Images can be taken above or below the water. They should convey a message – symbolic or actual – whether seas as reservoirs of extraordinary plenty or oceans as drivers of climate and weather, or as examples of human exploitation, protection or restoration of a marine environment.

Find out more about this brand new category from the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition Manager.

Conveying the essence of a plant or fungus or portraying its importance or role in its environment or its means of survival.

Explore winning images from the Plants and Fungi category.

Reflecting the simple beauty or complex artistry of nature. Images can be in colour or black and white and although may not match the criteria of other categories, they must remain true to nature.

Find out more about this brand new category from the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition Manager.

Revealing life under water, whether a marine or freshwater environment. Images can focus on animal behaviour or portray animals or plants as part of particular underwater environments.

Explore previous entries that have won in the Underwater category.

Focusing on nature’s occupation or cohabitation in a human-dominated environment, whether capturing the magic of the commonplace or the surprise of the unexpected or normally unseen.

Explore winning Urban Wildlife photographs.

Communicating the vital role of freshwater ecosystems, from mountain-tops-bogs and peat uplands, rivers and lakes to deltas, floodplains, marshes and mangroves. Images can be powerful through their impact or beauty or illustrate an environmental or conservation story that reveals the importance of wetlands for nature and/or for people.

Find out more about this brand new category from the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition Manager.

Investigating the relationship between humans and the natural world. Images can be challenging, uplifting, provocative or revelatory, and should illustrate how our attitudes, decisions and actions impact the natural world.

See previous winning images from the Photojournalism category.

Multiple image categories

For the following categories, you will need to submit multiple images. You may provide a minimum of six and maximum of 10 images.

These images count towards your total of 25 images entered into the competition.

Telling a powerful story, these six to ten images should have both individual quality and combined narrative power. Stories can be challenging, uplifting, provocative or revelatory and should illustrate how our attitudes, decisions and actions impact the natural world.

Enter stories of up to 10 images, from which our jury will select a maximum of six.

See previous winners from this category.

Demonstrating style and artistic intent, this selection of the photographer’s best images (six to ten images of varying subjects or viewpoints) should show a breadth of skill and vision but with consistent quality.

See previous winners from this category.

Displaying a selection of the photographer’s best work, these images (six to ten) should sit well together, whether through a particular style or approach or a focus on a particular topic, but do not need to tell a story.

See previous winners from this category.

Read about the categories in a different language

The category information below is in PDF format.

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Are you under 18 years old?

Enter the Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. Find out everything you need to know about categories, awards and how to submit your images.

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