Steve Winter—winner of the Wildlife Photojournalist award. This is a very special tiger. He is one of fewer than 400-500 wild, critically endangered Sumatran tigers. It was a huge challenge for Steve to photograph one, as those that have escaped poaching and forest clearance are mostly confined to patches of forests or the mountains and are extremely shy. A former tiger hunter, now employed as a park ranger, advised Steve where to set up his camera trap. But the challenge remained to position the remote-control camera and the lights in exactly the right position so the tiger would be lit centre-stage in front of a backdrop of forest habitat. The seemingly unstoppable growth of oil-palm plantations in Sumatra and continuing poaching for body parts for use in traditional Chinese medicine indicate that this subspecies of tiger is destined to become extinct in the wild, as have its Javan and Balinese relatives. Courtesy of Steve Winter/Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2012.

Photography Awards: A Walk on the Wild Side

Above: Last Look by Steve Winter, winner of the Veolia Wildlife Photojournalist award.

Quick thinking, fast reactions, patience, resolve, or just being in the right place at the right time—the qualities that make for great nature photography are almost as varied as the subject matter.  Almost 50,000 entries from all corners of the globe were submitted to this year’s Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition, with the winners announced this week at London’s Natural History Museum.

The winners of the contest go on display in the Natural History Museum from today and the exhibition will tour over the next year, including stints in Australia and New Zealand. Below is a selection of this year’s photography—Entries for the 2013 competition open on December 10.

The competition is owned by the Natural History Museum and BBC Worldwide.

Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London; 44-20/7942-5011;

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