You can help to choose a winner of a world-renowned photography competition by voting in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year People's Choice Award.
You can can choose from these 25 images, pre-selected by the Natural History Museum from almost 50,000 submissions from 95 countries. Which one captures your imagination? Once you've decided the one you like best, head over to
http://bit.ly/WPY52PeoplesChoice and vote for it. You have until 10 January 2017 to make up your mind, but choose carefully, as you have just one vote.
Daisy Gilardini, Switzerland: Hitching a Ride. This female polar bear was resting with its two young cubs in Wapusk National Park, Manitoba, Canada, when it suddenly got up and rushed downhill through the deep snow. One of the cubs jumped on to her, holding onto her furry backside with a firm bite – totally unexpected and humorous behaviour.
Daisy Gilardini/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Thomas Kokta, Germany: Monkey Ball. Cold temperatures on Shodoshima Island, Japan, sometimes lead to monkey balls, where a group of five or more snow monkeys huddle together to keep warm. Thomas observed a large group exhibiting this behaviour close to a tree, giving him the vantage point he needed. A few days and a tree climb later he got the image he desired.
Thomas Kokta/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Johan Kloppers, South Africa: The stare of death. Johan saw this little wildebeest shortly after it was born in the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, South Africa. Little did he know that he would witness its death later that same day – the small herd of wildebeest walked right past a pride of lions and the calf was caught by a lioness and then taken by this male lion.
Johan Kloppers/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Gunther Riehle, Germany: Facing the Storm. Gunther arrived at the frozen sea ice in Antarctica in sunshine, but by the evening a storm picked up. Initially just strong winds, by the early morning snow had arrived. He concentrated on taking images of the emperor penguin chicks huddled together to shield themselves from the force of the snowstorm.
Gunther Riehle/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Guy Edwardes, UK: Eye contact. The Dalmatian pelican, seen here on Lake Kerkini, Greece, is the largest species of pelican in the world. It is native to eastern Europe, Russia and Asia, however, its population is currently threatened in some areas from hunting, water pollution and habitat loss, particularly a decline in wetlands.
Guy Edwardes/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Tapio Kaisla, Finland: Head-On. Tapio took a trip to Dovrefjell–Sunndalsfjell National Park, Norway, to find these magnificent oxen amid their natural habitat. Even though spring is not rutting season for these animals, they were already seriously testing their strength against each other and the air rang out with the loud bang of the head-on collision between these two beasts.
Tapio Kaisla/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Rudi Hulshof, South Africa: Confusion. Rudi wanted to capture the uncertainty of the future of the southern white rhino in the Welgevonden Game Reserve, South Africa, because of poaching. He anticipated the moment when these two rhinos would walk past each other, creating this silhouette effect and the illusion of a two-headed rhino.
Rudi Hulshof/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Bernd Wasiolka, Germany: Sisters. Bernd encountered a large lion pride at a waterhole in the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, South Africa. One of the two males spray-marked the branches of a nearby tree. Later two females sniffed the markings and for a brief moment both adopted the same posture.
Bernd Wasiolka/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Victor Tyakht, Russia: Rainbow Wings. The bird’s wing acts as a diffraction grating – a surface structure with a repeating pattern of ridges or slits. The structure causes the incoming light rays to spread out, bend and split into spectral colours, producing this shimmering rainbow effect, captured here by Victor.
Victor Tyakht/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Stephen Belcher, New Zealand: Into the Fray. Stephen spent a week photographing golden snub-nosed monkeys in a valley in the Zhouzhi Nature Reserve in the Qinling Mountains, China. The monkeys have very thick fur, which they need to withstand the freezing nights in winter. This image shows two males about to fight, one already up on a rock, the other bounding in with a young male.
Stephen Belcher/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Sergio Sarta, Italy: The Couple. During a dive off the coast of Tulamben, Bali, Indonesia, Sergio was finning across a volcanic, dark grey, sandy seabed when suddenly, he saw a bright-coloured organism – a fire urchin with an elegant couple of little Coleman shrimps. The fire urchin has quills that are very toxic to humans – the shrimps avoid this danger by seeking out safe areas between the quills.
Sergio Sarta/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Reinhold Schrank, Austria: Caterpillar Curl. Reinhold was at Lake Kerkini, Greece, taking pictures of birds, but the conditions were not ideal, so he looked for other options. He saw this caterpillar on a flower and encouraged it onto a piece of rolled dry straw. He had to work fast because the caterpillar was constantly moving.
Reinhold Schrank/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Michael Lambie, Canada: The Stand-Off. It was breeding season and all the male turkeys were putting on a show for the females, but a number of birds seemed a little confused. This one was more concerned with the potential suitor in front of it, not realising it was its own reflection.
Michael Lambie/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Mario Cea, Spain: The Blue Trail. The kingfisher frequented this natural pond every day, and Mario used a high shutter speed with artificial light to photograph it. He used several units of flash for the kingfisher and a continuous light to capture the wake as the bird dived down towards the water.
Mario Cea/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Marco Gargiulo, Italy: Spiral. Sabella spallanzanii is a species of marine polychaete, also known as a bristle worm. The worm secretes mucus that hardens to form a stiff, sandy tube that protrudes from the sand. It has two layers of feeding tentacles that can be retracted into the tube, and one of the layers forms a distinct spiral.
Marco Gargiulo/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Karine Aigner, USA: Into the Night. During the summer months, 20 million Mexican free-tailed bats arrive at Bracken Cave in San Antonio, Texas, USA, to give birth and raise their young. Each evening at dusk, the hungry mothers emerge into the night in a vortex, circling out through the entrance and rising into the sky to feed on insects.
Karine Aigner/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Gordon Illg, USA: Ghostly Snow Geese. These snow geese almost seemed like ghosts in the pink early morning light as they landed among sandhill cranes in the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico, USA. Gordon had no control over the patterns made by the landing geese, all he could do was compose the image around the cranes and keep pushing the shutter button as the geese dropped down.
Gordon Illg/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
David Maitland, UK: Willow Up Close. David photographed the crystallised chemical salicin, which comes from willow tree bark. Salicin forms the basis of the analgesic Aspirin – no doubt this is why some animals seek out willow bark to chew on.
David Maitland/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Cristobal Serrano, Spain: Tasty Delicacy. The natural world provides countless magical moments, none more so than the delicate moment a tiny, elegant hummingbird softly inserts its slender bill into the corolla of a flower to drink nectar. Cristobal was lucky enough to capture that exact moment in Los Quetzales National Park, San José, Costa Rica.
Cristobal Serrano/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Cari Hill, New Zealand: Breakfast Time. Shortly after purchasing the Giraffe Manor in Nairobi, Kenya, the owners learned that the only remaining Rothschild’s giraffes in the country were at risk, as their sole habitat was being subdivided into smallholdings. So they began a breeding programme to reintroduce the Rothschild’s giraffe into the wild. Today, guests can enjoy visits from resident giraffes in search of a treat.
Cari Hill/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Bence Máté, Hungary: Opportunistic Croc. Although this shot was taken from a safe hide, Bence recalls that it was chilling to see the frightening, killing eyes of this four-metre-long Nile crocodile. This individual was baited with natural carcasses on an island in the Zimanga Private Game Reserve, South Africa, but crocs also come here to bask in the Sun.
Bence Máté/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Annie Katz, USA: Colorado Red. It was a crisp, clear day in January when Annie saw this Colorado red fox hunting in her neighbour’s field in Aspen, Colorado, USA. The light was perfect and she took the photo as the fox approached her, looking right into the lens of her camera.
Annie Katz/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Andrea Marshall, USA: Jelly Starburst. Andrea was snorkelling off the coast of Mozambique when she came across hundreds of large jelly fish. Many were covered with brittle stars – opportunistic riders, taking advantage of this transport system to disperse along the coast. Delicate lighting makes the jelly glow, so the viewer can focus on the subtle colours and textures.
Andrea Marshall/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Ally McDowell, USA/UK: Eye in Focus. Ally often focuses on colours and patterns underwater. She nearly threw away an image of a fish’s eye but her partner asked to see it and then turned it upside down. It was then that Ally saw it was an unusual, abstract view, and so on a night dive, when the parrotfish were still and sleeping, she focused on creating a similar image.
Ally McDowell/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Alain Mafart Renodier, France: A Mother's Hand. Alain was on a wintertime visit to Japan’s Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park when he took this poignant photograph of a sleeping baby Japanese macaque, its mother’s hand covering its head protectively.
Alain Mafart Renodier/Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016
Shortlisted images are currently on display at the highly-acclaimed
Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition at the Natural History Museum in London, until the vote closes on 10 January 2017. The winner of the vote will then be showcased until the exhibition closes on 10 September 2017. The top five People's Choice Award images will also be displayed online at nhm.ac.uk/wpy joining the 100-strong winning portfolio chosen by the judges.
Championing the discovery and celebrating the diversity of the natural world through the power of photography, Wildlife Photographer of the Year is the most established and longest-running contest of its kind in the world. Vote in the People's Choice Award at