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The Student Wildlife Photography Competition

Updated: Jul 23, 2018

We've had a brilliant time running the first Student Wildlife Photography Competition this year with NUS (the National Union of Students)! Open to anyone currently in further or higher education in the UK, it elicited hundreds of fantastic entries from students across the country, thanks in no small part to the brilliant prizes provided by NUS, Opticron, Wex and RSPB Minsmere! Our acclaimed judging panel of Gordon Buchanan, Stephen Moss, Mark Edwards and Jack Perks had tough decisions to make, but we're thrilled to finally announce the winners!!


Overall Winner and Category Winner for Hidden Nature


Photographer: John Hanson

Institution: Falmouth University

Image name: New Forest Pirata

Image description: This image is from a recent series of wide-angle macro and this was my favourite so far. I originally thought it was a juvenile Dolomedes but further research led me to a type of 'Pirata'.


Hidden Nature


Second Place


Photographer: Alaster Moffat

Institution: University of East Anglia

Image name: Winter Kestrel

Image description: This lovely first-winter male kestrel often hunts in our local park. Nobody seems to notice the tiny falcon perched sometimes only metres from their heads. We managed to capture our local tiny falcon struggling through his first snowstorm, huddled on the side of an old oak. We regularly return to check he's doing okay.


Third Place


Photographer: Daphne Wong

Institution: Falmouth University

Image name: Silver-Studded Blue

Image description: A female silver-studded blue against the setting sun. These stunning butterflies are restricted to heathland habitats and their numbers have suffered a major decline in recent years due to habitat fragmentation.


My Local Patch


Category Winner


Photographer: Matt Wall

Institution: University of Exeter

Image name: Scilly Sunset

Image description: This image was taken on the north-west corner of St Agnes, Isles of Scilly. Whilst walking back to our campsite the bright hues of these foxgloves caught my eye, living on the edge before thousands of miles of ocean.


Second Place


Photographer: Nick Proctor

Institution: Falmouth University

Image name: Spiny Starfish Amongst the Rocks

Image description: On location at Castle Beach, Falmouth. This spiny starfish was out in the pools during a low spring tide.


Third Place


Photographer: Adam Andrews

Institution: University of the West of England

Image name: Swan Drying its Wings

Image description: After three hours of sitting, waiting, and watching, this swan began to be more active in its routine. It began to bathe itself not only in the cool, crisp water of the lake but also the low, warm sun as it was setting. With little time left I rearranged my position - lying flat and still I dialled in the settings and waited for it to dry its wings.


Now for Nature


Category Winner


Photographer: Jack Mifflin

Institution: Falmouth University

Image name: The British Primitive Goat

Image description: A billy British primitive goat feeds on his lowland winter habitat on Loch Linnhe. He will spend the colder months feeding on the abundant seaweed and long grass. My project has been exploring the beauty of this dwindling species and raising awareness for it, before it is too late.


Second Place


Photographer: Filip Wieckowski

Institution: University College London

Image name: Green Sea

Image description: A selection of green plastics collected from Alderney's beaches


Third Place


Photographer: Patrick Neville

Institution: The University of Aberdeen

Image name: Zebra Jumping Spider

Image description: The zebra jumping spider (Salticus scenicus), with a body length of approximately 4mm, is one of four spiders featured in the Scottish Spider Search, an initiative created to encourage biological recording of under-recorded spiders. This jumping spider was found on a red brick wall basking in the sun. Jumping spiders have well-developed vision and an inquisitive nature.


Throughout August the nine winning photographs will be on display at RSPB Minsmere in Suffolk! Make sure you pop down to the iconic flagship reserve and check out the exhibition!


Huge thanks again to everyone who entered and our brilliant judges for giving their time to the competition, and the organisations who have supported us throughout the process! Keep your eyes peeled for more competitions coming soon from us at A Focus on Nature!!

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