The good life

Daniël Nelson's Image

Daniël met Caco after a three-hour trek through dense vegetation with skilled trackers. He was part of a family of 16 gorillas feeding on sweet African breadfruit. In his compelling portrait of this relaxed young gorilla, Daniël captured the inextricable connection of these wild apes with the forest on which they depend.

The nine-year-old gorilla, Caco, is preparing to leave his family – putting on muscle and getting a little too bold. He will soon become a solitary silverback, hopefully starting his own family in eight to 10 years’ time. Western lowland gorillas are still critically endangered, threatened by illegal hunting and the spread of diseases like the Ebola virus.

Behind the lens

Daniël Nelson

Daniël Nelson

The Netherlands

When he was six, on a family trip to Zambia, Daniël first held a camera and realised he could create his own pictures. Having grown up in Amsterdam but being lucky enough to travel, he has been following his passion for wildlife photography. This winning image was taken when he was 16. He has finished school and is undertaking a backpacking trip across Africa.

Image details

  • Canon 6D
  • Sigma 50–500mm f4.5–6.3 lens at 500mm
  • 1/30 sec at f6.3
  • Odzala-Kokoua National Park, Republic of the Congo
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.

Support our important work

Help us harness the power of photography to advance scientific knowledge, spread awareness of important issues and nurture a global love for nature.

Donate now

Discover more

Sign up to our newsletter

Receive email updates about Wildlife Photographer of the Year news, events, science, products, services and fundraising activities. We may occasionally include third-party content from our corporate partners and other museums. We will not share your personal details with these third parties. You must be over the age of 13. Privacy notice.