Brazen fox demands top prize in animal photography competition

Mammal Photographer of the Year Overall Winner, "Foxhall Zafira"

Mammal Photographer of the Year Overall Winner, “Foxhall Zafira”  Mammal Society/Roger Cox

Amateur photographer Roger Cox has won the top prize in the UK Mammal Society’s annual photo contest. The extraordinary image of an urban fox staring down the lens is just one of several superb shots in this small but impressive animal photography competition.

The Mammal Society is a London-based charity dedicated to science-led mammal conservation. Its annual photo contest may be small, with entries in the hundreds, but the quality of this year’s celebrated submissions is strong.

Mammal Comedian Award, "Grey Seal"

Mammal Comedian Award, “Grey Seal”  Mammal Society/Philip Ryan

“Entries were varied and include small mammals in the captive environment to larger mammals found in our seas and oceans, as well as species that were encountered during vital research projects together with those trying to eke out a living alongside our busy lives,” says Brett Lewis, this year’s head judge.

Lewis says this year’s overall winner is the kind of photo that gets overlooked in other competitions. It may not be technically perfect but it certainly captures a thrilling and unique moment between an animal and a human, in an urban environment.

Highly Commended, "Red Fox"Red Fox by Becca Fulcher

“This animal often foraged for the wild cherries that fell from the trees and landed in the wells between the bonnets and windscreens of parked cars,” explains winning photographer Roger Cox. “It was also used to getting food from people who threw food out of their car windows at night during the early hours. I took this picture … when it jumped up on my car to investigate if there was anything of interest for it, as I’d seen it do several times before.”

Elusive Mammal Winner, "Breaching Common Dolphin"

Elusive Mammal Winner, “Breaching Common Dolphin”  Mammal Society/Dan Lettice

Another highlight in the contest is the winner of the Elusive Animal category. Photographer Dan Lettice captured this beautiful shot of a dolphin in mid-air off the coast of West Cork, Ireland. Ecologist and judge Roo Campbell suggests the perfectly timed snap shows impressive photographic skill.

Harvest Mouse Rosehip by Sarah Butcher

“Obtaining clear photos of dolphins above water isn’t easy,” says Campbell. “Dan Lettice’s Breaching Common Dolphin, poised mid-air almost as if it had been swimming above the waves all along, is a fantastic shot allowing a rare view of this handsome species.”

Mammal Photographer of the Year Runner-Up, "Rolling Mountain Hare"

Mammal Photographer of the Year Runner-Up, “Rolling Mountain Hare”  Mammal Society/Kate MacRae

Take a look through our gallery at more winners and highly commended highlights from this year’s competition.

Source: The Mammal Society, 2020 Mar 21

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