Slideshow: 2022 Audubon Photography Awards
The National Audubon Society has announced the winners, runner-ups and honorable mentions of its 2022 Audubon Photography Awards, highlighting incredible images of birds from around the globe. We’ve rounded up some of the top images, including the Grand Prize winner and the winners in each of the stills photography categories, to showcase the final selections.
This year’s Grand Prize winner won $5000, while the other winners win either $2500 or $1000, depending on the category. For the Youth Prize, winners get six days at Audubon’s Hog Island Audubon Camp during the 2023 season. The winning photographs were selected by a panel of twelve judges and judged on technical quality, originality and artistic merit. All images must abide by Audubon’s Guide to Ethical Bird Photography and Videography.
The National Audubon Society serves to ‘protect birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow.’ The organization ‘works throughout the Americas using science, advocacy, education, and on-the-ground conservation’ while ‘State programs, nature centers, chapters, and partners give Audubon an unparalleled wingspan that reaches millions of people each year to inform, inspire, and unite diverse communities in conservation action.’
The nonprofit conservation organization has been around since 1905. You can find out more on the National Audubon Society’s website and follow them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. You can also view the top 100 shots from the contest on the National Audubon Society’s website.
Grand Prize Winner
Bird: White-tailed Kite
Location: Costa Mesa, California, USA
Hometown: Irvine, California, USA
Image description: A large, mostly white White-tailed Kite hovers in mid-air with wings and tail feathers spread wide and directly faces the camera with its underside exposed. It clutches a vole in its yellow talons. Another raptor flies above the forward-facing kite, its profile visible in front of a cloudless blue sky.
Bird: Western Grebe
Location: Calero Reservoir, San Jose, California, USA
Hometown: Castro Valley, California, USA
Image description: A Western Grebe’s red eye stares into the camera, its body facing forward on nearly still water. Two chicks ride on its back, with their head cocked around the adult grebe’s neck to either side. Each holds either end of a silver fish in its beak.
Amateur Honorable Mention
Bird: Common Raven
Location: Algonquin Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada
Hometown: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Image description: Two black Common Ravens stand on white snow. Standing slightly to the side, the bird on the left appears to groom the second, its beak on the second bird’s head. The bird on the right stands sideways in a slightly crouched position, its glossy feathers fluffed out.
Plants For Birds Winner
Bird: Nashville Warbler and scarlet bee balm
Location: Blue Sea, Quebec, Canada
Hometown: Oro-Medonte, Ontario, Canada
Image description: A little Nashville Warbler, yellow with a gray head, clings to the stalk of a scarlet bee balm plant. Its profile faces a pink seedhead where a few bright red flower segments remain and stand out against a green background. In the bird’s beak is a tiny snail.
Plants For Birds Honorable Mention
Bird: Hawai‘i ‘Amakihi and ‘iliahi
Location: Haleakalā National Park, Maui, Hawai‘i, USA
Hometown: Pā‘ia, Hawai‘i, USA
Image description: A Hawai‘i ‘Amakihi drinks nectar upside down from the pink, clustered flowers of the sandalwood tree. Below the blooms, a black and orange bee approaches, its beating wings blurred. The bird’s small green body is in soft sunlight as its slightly curved black beak disappears into a flower.
Bird: White-tailed Ptarmigan
Location: Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada
Hometown: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Image description: A White-tailed Ptarmigan sits atop a rock overlooking mountains and a valley. The bird’s back faces the camera, and its head is turned to the side, showing the viewer its profile. The bird’s brown and white feathers look similar to the pattern of the green lichen covering the rock.
Professional Honorable Mention
Bird: Sharp-tailed Grouse
Location: Thompson-Nicola, British Columbia, Canada
Hometown: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Image description: With their wings open, two male Sharp-tailed Grouse engage in a tussle, suspended in the air just above and in front of beige grasses. The bird on the left looks up at the bird on the right, appearing to snap at it. The bird on the right looks down on its aggressor, its feet splayed in front of it.
Bird: Black-bellied Whistling-Duck
Location: Farm 13/Stick Marsh, Indian River County, Florida, USA
Hometown: Miami Beach, Florida, USA
Image description: A Black-bellied Whistling-Duck with a long brown body and pink legs perches on the edge of a gaping hole in the trunk of a palm tree. Its head, which also sports a bright pink bill, peers into the hollow of the trunk that is yellow with early morning light. Behind the tree is dense greenery.
Youth Honorable Mention
Bird: Greater Prairie-Chicken
Location: Fort Pierre National Grassland, Fort Pierre, South Dakota, USA
Hometown: Fairfax County, Virginia, USA
Image description: The head of a Greater-Prairie Chicken in profile is in sharp focus, the grassland background blurred behind it. The bird’s mouth is opened slightly, and the orange air sacs on its neck are deflated and have a bumpy texture. The horn-like feathers on its head are erect, and above the bird’s alert eyes protrude textured golden eyebrows. Its body is covered in brown- and white-striped feathers.
Fisher Prize Winner
Bird: Northern Shoveler
Location: Muskegon County Wastewater Management System, Muskegon County, Michigan, USA
Hometown: Alto, Michigan, USA
Image description: The frame is full of emerald-green heads and brown and white feathers—a sea of Northern Shovelers. The image centers around one male that rises above the rest with its wings outstretched, exposing the blue on the upper part of its wing.
Female Bird Prize Winner
Bird: Greater Sage-Grouse
Photographer: Alan Krakauer/Audubon Photography Awards/2022 Female Bird Prize Winner
Location: Fremont County, Wyoming, USA
Hometown: Richmond, California, USA
Image description: A female Greater Sage-Grouse stands in profile surrounded by sagebrush. Spent seedheads stretch slightly higher than the bird. White snow covers the ground to the bird’s belly and clings to the surrounding plants. The bird has a warm brown eye, a short but stout black beak, and finely patterned gray, white, brown, and black feathers. The bird is front-lit by bright morning sun coming from the right of the frame.