Charismatic yet elusive, wild mammals can be challenging for photographers. The Mammal Society’s annual competition showcases the best efforts from around the UK in four categories. A free exhibition of the winning photographs will be held at the society’s spring conference in Stafford.
Polecat by Richard Bowler. Winner of the Mammals on our Doorstep category. Taken in north Wales
Surfing the weir by Paul Dibben. Runner-up photo in the Mammals on our Doorstep category. Taken on the river Stour. ‘As the otter moved toward the weir at the far side I quickly made my way along the bank until I was level with the weir, getting low down I managed to get a great angle as the otter summited it. The photo really shows how sleek the otters are, perfectly suited to their watery environment’
Red Dawn by Mark Eastment. Winning photograph of the Mammals in our Landscapes category. Red deer rutting in Ashton Court park, Bristol, as the sun rises above the mist
Urban red fox living in a cemetery by Richard Bowler, runner-up in the Mammals in our Landscapes category
Brown hares by Martin Clay. Highly commended in the Mammals in our Landscapes category
Catch of the day by Paul Dibben. Winner of the A Brief Encounter category. ‘This male otter appeared from nowhere and quickly started fishing in the fast-flowing current of the swollen winter river. My brother alerted me when he surfaced with a huge fish. I could not believe the size of his catch, its head being nearly as large as the otters, the fish was later confirmed to be a very large chub’
Bank vole by Sarah Darnell. Runner-up in the A Brief Encounter category. ‘I have been joined by one brave little vole, who I have nicknamed Little Jack Horner, who is now bold enough to sit in the corner of my hide space and tuck into a fresh plum or two
Sitting hare by Alex White. Winner of Young Photographer category aged 15 and under. ‘Even though I spend a long time creeping on my belly to get closer to the hares they still manage to hear me a long way off. This one stopped eating to look to see if I was a threat. You can see its muscles ready to run at any moment’
Fox by Kyle Moore. Winner of the Young Photographer of the Year aged 16 to 18 category.
Roe doe by Dan Rushton. Shortlisted for exhibition. ‘After spending the evening photographing fox cubs in Dorset, I headed home through a field that had yet to be cut for hay when a doe popped up a head of me and leapt through the long grass. The sun had all but set behind her so I underexposed the shot and composed place her to the left of the frame to allow her some room to leap across the photograph’
Mountain Hares in the Cairngorms by Martin Dennys. Shortlisted for exhibition
Red deer by Emma Simpson-Wells. Exhibition photo. ‘When I woke up to snow in January this year I immediately grabbed my camera and headed to find the infamous deer of Wollaton. It never ceases to amaze me how these beautiful mammals can be living in the middle of Nottingham, just a brick wall away from busy main roads and the bustling campus. On this snowy day they were hiding away from the paths on top of the golf course and I took this picture of them silhouetted in the distance’
Source: The Guardian