Mara mama calls

Darío Podestá's Image

On the fourth day of his stake-out, Darío watched from a distance with a remote trigger as a female mara returned to its burrow. It gave a shrill whistle, and three pups scuttled out. The female sniffed each one to make sure only her two young were suckled.

Patagonian maras mate for life, but their breeding arrangements are complex. Many pairs hide their young in the same den and come back every day for the mother to suckle its offspring. These communal burrows offer extra protection from predators – there is often more than one adult pair watching the den.

Behind the lens

Darío Podestá

Darío Podestá


Darío is a biologist - his work in the field also allows him to photograph wildlife. His images have been published in many books, calendars and magazines, as well as for conservation projects. Through his photography, he hopes to raise awareness of the need to protect the planet and its species for future generations.

Image details

  • Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • 17-40mm f4 lens at 17mm
  • 1/400 sec at f14  •   ISO 1000
  • Near Puerto Madryn, Argentina
Copyright in WPY competition photographs remains the property of the respective photographers. You may not copy, share, reproduce or republish the photographs except as expressly permitted by copyright law. For media image usage enquiries, please contact us.

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Black and white
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