Wild Cities Photography Competition - And the winner is... - Earthwatch
Martin West - Urban owl on the prowl - winner of the Wild Cities Photography Competition

Wild Cities Photography Competition – And the winner is…

We are thrilled to announce the winner and highly commended runners-up of The Wild Cities Photography Competition which we ran between May – October 2023 in proud partnership with Canon Europe.

About the competition

The Wild Cities Photography Competition celebrated the UK’s urban green spaces and their wild inhabitants, encouraging amateur photographers based in the UK to submit their best urban wildlife snapshots for a chance to win cutting-edge camera prizes and to be featured in a special one-night exhibition.

The 30 best submissions and winning images were selected by our prestigious panel of judgesRt Hon. the Baroness Hayman GBE – Chair of cross-party parliamentary group Peers for the PlanetOllie Olanipekun – Founder of the UK’s first birdwatching collective for people of colour Flock Together, and Fiona Shields – Head of Photography at The Guardian.

Congratulations to our winner

From over 380 submissions, our judges selected “Urban owl on the prowl” by Martin West as the winning photograph. Martin’s photo perfectly captures the beauty and adaptability of wildlife in our cities: “The local little owls in my park often use the lamp posts as a perch while out hunting. I live in quite a built-up area and one of the high rise flats made a good backdrop for this image.”

Martin West - Urban owl on the prowl - winner of the Wild Cities Photography Competition
Martin West: “Urban owl on the prowl”

Two fantastic runners-up

As close runners-up submissions, our judges selected “Seagull legs” by Tracy Vine. “I took this picture through a skylight frosted window in the roof showing a seagull’s legs. All you can see are its feet and the reflection from the sun which is casting a shadow on its legs.”

Tracy Vine - Seagull legs - runner-up in the Wild Cities competition
Tracy Vine: “Seagull legs”

One photographer surprised us with sharing more than one brilliant submission. Two out of three photos submitted by Mark Deans were selected as runners-up by our judges, “Pine in the van” and “Fox and the rainbow”. “There was a pine marten in the Aberdeen Fittie area for a number of months, and I took a picture or two of it playing in the area. On a different occasion, I was taking pictures of the local harbour fox in Aberdeen and it started to rain, so I got a rainbow in the background of my picture.”

Mark Deans - Pine in the van - runner-up in the Wild Cities competition
Mark Deans: “Pine in the van”
Mark Deans - Fox and the rainbow - runner-up in the Wild Cities competition
Mark Deans: “Fox and the rainbow”

The top 30 submissions

The following photos were selected as part of the best 30 submissions and displayed alongside the winner and runners-up in our one-night exhibition.

A huge thank you to everyone who has taken part in our competition!

What’s next? A new Tiny Forest!

For every photo entered into our Wild Cities competition, our partner Canon Europe has donated £5 towards the creation of a new Tiny Forest. Our winner, Martin West, was given the opportunity to choose the location. The Tiny Forest will be planted at Southall Recreation Ground, London. It will connect local communities with nature, provide habitat for urban wildlife and help mitigate the impact of climate change.

Find out more about our Tiny Forest movement.

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