Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013: winners gallery (and how they shot them)

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013 winners revealed (and the stories behind them)

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013: The Eric Hosking Portfolio Award

Winner: Connor Stefanison, Canada

Connor Stefanison / Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013

Connor Stefanison / Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013

Flight path
Living on the Pacific coast of British Columbia, Canada, Connor has learnt about wildlife and wilderness first-hand. He took up photography when he was 17, going on to win a number of scholarships and prizes. Now, at 22, he is finishing a degree in ecology and conservation and is planning to work as a biologist and eventually as a full-time wildlife photographer.

The flight path Connor’s photography draws on the wilderness skills he acquired over a childhood spent largely outdoors. This female barred owl had a territory near his home in Burnaby, British Columbia.

He watched her for some time, familiarising himself with her flight paths until he knew her well enough to set up the shot. ‘I wanted to include the western red cedar and the sword ferns so typical of this Pacific coastal rainforest.’

Setting up his camera near one of the owl’s favourite perches, linked to a remote and three off-camera flashes, diffused and on low settings, he put a dead mouse on a platform above the camera and waited for the swoop that he knew would come. ‘She grabbed the mouse, flew back to her perch and began calling to her mate. It is one of the most exciting calls to hear in the wild.’

Canon EOS 5D Mark II + 16-35mm f2.8 lens at 16mm; 1/13 sec at f8; ISO 1600; Canon 580 EXII flash + Canon 580 EX flash + Canon 430 EX II flash; Vello FreeWave Plus wireless remote shutter; tripod.

Connor Stefanison / Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013

Connor Stefanison / Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013

Lucky pounce
‘Anticipating the pounce – that was the hardest part,’ says Connor, who had come to Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA, in search of wildlife as much as the spectacular landscape. He had found this fox, his first ever, on his last day in the park.

It was so absorbed in hunting that Connor had plenty of time to get out of the car and settle behind a rock. It quartered the grassland, back and forth, and then started staring intently at a patch of ground, giving Connor just enough warning of the action to come. When it sprung up, Connor got his shot. And when it landed, the fox got his mouse.

Canon EOS-1D Mark IV + 500mm f4 lens at 500mm; 1/2500 sec at f8; ISO 500.

PAGE 1 – Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013 winners revealed
PAGE 2 – Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013: The Eric Hosking Portfolio Award
PAGE 3 – Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013: Animals in Their Environment
PAGE 4 – Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013: Behaviour: Birds
PAGE 5 – Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Behaviour: Mammals
PAGE 6 – Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Behaviour: Cold-blooded animals
PAGE 7 – Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013: Wildscapes
PAGE 8 – Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2013: Creative Visions

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