This fairytale fox photo scooped a British Wildlife Photography Award

British Wildlife Photography Awards 2023
Animal Portraits Winner - Sleeping With Dandelions - Captured using Nikon D500 with Nikon 300mm f/2.8 lens (Image credit: Lewis Newman / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

The winners of the prestigious British Wildlife Photography Awards have just been announced, chosen from more than 13,000 submitted images celebrating the beauty and brutality of Britain's nature. 

An image of a red fox moving through a woodland that has been partially destroyed by industrialism has claimed this year's grand prize, and 28-year-old British photographer Charlie Page is the recipient of the £5,000 grand prize ( approximately $6,000 / AU$9,100). 

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We don't often see some of nature's most fateful impacts in the UK – at least in comparison with devastating Australian wildfires and American tornadoes – but we do have our own problem areas that include poaching, fox hunting and industrialism. 

Page's winning image (below), captured at Lee Valley Park in England, may not show catastrophic hurricanes or blazing fires. It does, however, remind us that local animals and wildlife across the UK are still losing their homes as the total population of cities grows, and the affordable housing crisis worsens. 

Grand prize winner & Urban Wildlife winner – A Look to the Future... (Nikon Z5 + Nikon 24-50mm f/4-6.3 • 24mm, 1/640 sec, f/4.0, ISO200). (Image credit: Charlie Page / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

The British Wildlife Photography Awards (BWPA) 2023 aims to showcase images of wildlife taken solely in the UK, while highlighting the great wealth and diversity of Britain’s natural history. It's also a crucial reminder of what value our woodlands, wetlands and other ecosystems still hold in Britain. 

"I knew this area was frequented by foxes, and I wanted to take an image with the industrial backdrop to show the devastation caused to this local woodland that the fox calls home," said Page. "I hope that wildlife photographers aren’t faced with similar scenes in years to come."

RSPB Young British Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2023 & 15-17 Years Winner – Branching Out (Canon EOS R6 + Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 • 600mm, 1/100 sec, f/6.3, ISO6400). (Image credit: Billy Evans-Freke / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

The RSPB Young British Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2023 title was awarded to Billy Evans-Freke for his image (above) of a tawny owlet resting in a tree in East Sussex, England. 

This award is supported by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds with the aim of encouraging younger people to get involved with nature and photography. Billy also won the 15-17 Years category with this image. 

Animal Behaviour Winner – Hitching a Lift (Nikon D850 + Nikon 500mm f/5.6 • 500mm, 1/1600 sec; f/11, ISO2200) (Image credit: James Roddie / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

"The talented photographers in this year’s competition have given us an exceptional window into Britain's nature," said Will Nicholls, director of the BWPA. "It’s an important reminder of the wildlife and wild spaces that still remain in the UK, and are in need of our care and protection."

Botanical Britain Winner – A Poet’s Lunch (Canon EOS 6D Mark II + Canon 100mm f/2.8 Macro • 100mm, 1/320 sec, f/2.8, ISO100) (Image credit: Matt Doogue / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

Black & White Winner – Great Mell Fell (Sony A7R + Sony 16-35mm f/4 • 26mm, 1/30 sec, f/8.0, ISO250) (Image credit: Matthew Turner / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

Coast & Marine Winner – Welcome to the Zoo (plankton) (Nikon D850 + Nikon 60mm f/2.8 • 60mm, 1/60 sec, f/29, ISO2000) (Image credit: Henley Spiers / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

Habitat Winner – Stag by the Loch Side (Canon EOS 5D Mark IV + Canon 70-300mm f/4-5.6 • 81mm, 1/2000 sec, f/11, ISO400) (Image credit: Neil McIntyre / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

Hidden Britain Winner – Honey Bee Flight Trail (Canon EOS 5D + Canon 100mm f/2.8 Macro • 100mm, 1/4 sec, f/32, ISO160). (Image credit: John Waters / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

Wild Woods Winner – Mystical Forest (Canon EOS 5D Mark III + Canon 24-105mm f/4 • 85mm, 1/13 sec, f/11, ISO100) (Image credit: Philip Selby / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

12-14 Years Winner – What’s Over There? (Canon EOS 5D Mark II + Sigma 100-400mm f/5-6.3 • 400mm, 1/2500 sec, f/6.3, ISO800) (Image credit: Felix Walker-Nix / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

11 and under Winner – Vine Wevill (Canon EOS 5D Mark III + Canon 100mm f/2.8 Macro • 100mm, 1/160 sec, f/16, ISO160) (Image credit: Wilbur King / British Wildlife Photography Awards)

All awarded and top-tier winning images will be published as a collection by Bird Eye Books in a hardback coffee table format, which is now available to purchase online with a foreword by none other than Dame Judi Dench. 

On another exciting note, the BWPA 2024 competition is now open for entries via the awards website and invites photographers of all abilities to submit their photos.

You may also be interested in the best portable hides and camouflage gear for photographing wildlife, as well as the best action cameras, and the best spotting scopes to never miss a moment

Take a look at our guide to the best lenses for bird photography and wildlife, as well as the best trail cameras and the best cellular trail cameras to capture the more easily spooked or timid subjects.

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Beth Nicholls
Staff Writer

A staff writer for Digital Camera World, Beth has an extensive background in various elements of technology with five years of experience working as a tester and sales assistant for CeX. After completing a degree in Music Journalism, followed by obtaining a Master's degree in Photography awarded by the University of Brighton, she spends her time outside of DCW as a freelance photographer specialising in live music events and band press shots under the alias 'bethshootsbands'.