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Picture-perfect puffin triumphs in Marwell Wildlife competition
9:29am Saturday 13th October 2012 in Winchester
A PUFFIN has triumphed over a tiger, a sand cat and a kingfisher at a Winchester wildlife park.
But it wasn’t a fight between the animals but rather Marwell Wildlife’s annual Photographer of the Year competition.
Photographers young and old were challenged to take snaps of creatures great and small in various categories.
Austin Thomas of Merseyside was the overall winner with his entry, ‘Puffin in the rain’, while 15-year-old Alex Berryman from Fleet won the junior category with his picture of a kingfisher.
Alex said: “I have achieved many Kingfisher shots over the past few years, this being one of my favourites. On this particular occasion, I spent six hours in a hide with only one brief visit from this female Kingfisher.”
Lawrie Brailey, of Southampton, won the Marwell Wildlife residents category with a picture of the Colden Common park’s male Amur tiger Gamin.
He said: “As a member, I go to Marwell almost every week. This picture was taken at the end of the day. Gamin was sat in the perfect position on top of the hill. He did a large yawn and I captured the image on burst. Friends encouraged me to enter and I’m really pleased to win.”
The wildlife charity received more than 1,500 entries from across the country in five categories – ‘Native’, ‘Cute and Funny’, ‘Marwell Wildlife residents’ and ‘Marwell Wildlife endangered’ and a People’s Choice award.
Judges included television presenter Philippa Forrester and award-winning wildlife photographer and author Heather Angel.
Heather said: “The standard of this year's Marwell Wildlife Photo Competition was high, which meant we spent much time deliberating over the engaging shots. Much care and thought had gone into the composition, the framing and the lighting – all essential factors in achieving an award-winning shot.”
All the winners, runners up and commended photographers are invited to the park on today (October 13) for an awards ceremony in Marwell Hall at 11am.
Prizes include photography courses worth £445, a high-tech digital camera and annual membership to Marwell.
All photos can be viewed at marwell.org.uk/photocomp while prints will be on display at the park.